In 2019, GDP increased within the 2.2-4.4% range and retail turnovers, except for motor and fuel, within the 5-7.2% y/y range in the Baltics. From March 2020, the future growth will be negatively affected by the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
Large scale extensions, redevelopments and new centre openings were realized. Retail stock above a GLA of 5,000 sq m expanded by ca. 200,000 sq m, totalling over 3 million sq m in the region.
Akropole (62,000 sq m of retail GLA) in Riga was the first new regional shopping centre development in Latvia after almost a decade. The Alfa expansion created the largest shopping centre in Latvia with a GLA of 71,000 sq m, while the Ulemiste expansion – the largest shopping centre in Estonia with a GLA of 73,000 sq m.
Retailers’ appetite for new markets continued. Among the largest cross-border physical space expanders were the Apollo Group in entertainment, Van-Graaf, COS and ‘& Other Stories’ in fashion, the recently announced Burger King in the fast food, and Decathlon in the sports sector.