Japan’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, and Tourism released their annual report of land prices across the country last week to great fanfare on the news that prices had appreciated nationally for the first time since 2008. Urban centers sucked up the majority of these gains, with smaller suburban and rural locales losing value as the country’s aging population reorganizes around major cities, yet certain regional areas are also benefiting from the ongoing tourism boom. The report includes information on residential, commercial, and industrial land, but today, a closer look at the commercial side.
The above chart shows the yearly percentage change in land prices for Japan’s three major metropolises, as well as the average land price for the nation’s regional areas, which have been in a state of constant decline since 1993. Although the rate of depreciation in these areas has lessened over the past couple years, this trend is likely to continue as the nation’s rural areas hollow out. The three metro areas all posted rises in land prices, with Osaka and Nagoya returning to appreciation for the first time since 2008 at 0.4% and 0.1% respectively. Tokyo continued down the path of growth it started in 2014 at 1.6%.
Unlike the categories for residential and commercial land, almost all of the biggest gainers this year were in greater Tokyo:
With the exception of a liquor distillery in Okinawa, all of the top ten sites which saw their land values rise were in the Tokyo area. The cities of Funabashi and Kashiwa in Chiba and Atsugi in Kanagawa make up more than half the list. Funabashi, Kashiwa, and Ota Ward in Tokyo all saw instances of growth over 10%.
Ota Ward shows up again on the Ministry’s list of the priciest industrial lands in the country:
Tokyo’s 23 wards dominate once again, although here the non-central neighborhoods have their chance to shine. Reclaimed land in the bay and areas close to Haneda Airport, both of which Ota Ward has plenty, prove especially popular. The reclaimed island north of Haneda which includes Ota’s Tokai (523,000 yen per square meter) and Shinagawa’s Yashio (328,000 yen per square meter) appears twice in the top half of the list.