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20 Jan, 2022 08:15

Foreigners selling up property in Kiev – expert

As rumors of a Russian offensive circulate, the property market in the Ukrainian capital has taken a hit
Foreigners selling up property in Kiev – expert

Foreign property owners in Kiev are actively selling up as the market reacts to concerns that Russia could be planning to invade its neighbor, the head of a real estate agency in the Ukrainian capital has claimed.

Speaking to news outlet Strana on Wednesday, Irina Lukhanina, director of the Best&Seller firm, said that “in recent years, foreigners amounted to 8-12% of buyers. Many have invested in commercial real estate and were also interested in rental housing.”

However, she said that now there have been instances of owners from abroad changing their minds on renting out their apartments, opting instead to sell their properties. However, the estate agent noted that those who have lived in Ukraine for a long time or run a business there are calmer and more skeptical about the prospect of a Russian attack.

Lukhanina’s comments come amid concerns from Western leaders that Moscow is planning to launch an incursion into Ukraine. Speaking at a briefing on Tuesday, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said the situation is now “extremely dangerous,” and Washington believes that “Russia could at any point launch an attack in Ukraine.”

Reports have circulated in Anglophone media in recent months claiming that troops are mounting on the border as a precursor for an offensive. The Kremlin has repeatedly denied the accusations that it is planning to attack, with its Press Secretary Dmitry Peskov describing them as “groundless” and manifestations of “hysteria” swirling in the media. The official also previously said that the movement of the country’s armed forces on its own territory is an internal matter and of no concern to anyone else.

The latest claims that Moscow is planning an incursion into Ukraine come just months after similar alarms were raised last April. Such calls have been an annual occurrence for some years now.