09/18/2014 | by

This edition of REIT magazine highlights the growth of the REIT approach to real estate investment across the globe. With the latest news from India, 31 countries now have REIT regimes in place, a group that includes both developed markets and developing economies. Remarkably, a decade ago there were only a dozen countries with REIT legislation, and just over 20 countries as recently as five years ago.

Importantly, one by-product of this global expansion is that we are seeing the many disparate sets of REIT rules beginning to converge. NAREIT and its partners in the Real Estate Equity Securitization Alliance (REESA) have worked to promote this convergence. By and large, the most recent REIT adopters have created rules similar to those of the United States.

Why is this consistency so important? Simply put, it facilitates securitized real estate investment across the globe. Investors from all corners of the earth know that, despite small differences at the margins, how a fibra in Mexico operates won’t be dramatically different from a Japanese REIT. This not only promotes investment in individual companies, it enables investment firms to build out new products that offer the investing public a more robust menu of investment options.

The global spread of REITs represents more than a testament to the work of NAREIT and the other members of REESA, though. It provides further proof of the enduring appeal of the REIT approach to real estate investment. The parameters of the REIT model don’t limit its effectiveness to the specific circumstances of the U.S. market—or any other individual market, for that matter. The REIT is as versatile as it is durable.

In my year as NAREIT Chair, I’ve become acquainted with the diverse industries that make up our REIT universe, both in the U.S. and abroad. My experiences in this leadership position have fostered tremendous respect and appreciation for the exceptional skills of NAREIT President and CEO Steven Wechsler and NAREIT’s management team.

I have been honored to serve as NAREIT Chair for the past 12 months and will continue to support both NAREIT and our industry after my tenure has drawn to a close. I look forward to seeing all of you in November in Atlanta at REITWorld 2014: NAREIT’s Annual Convention for All Things REIT.

Chairman, President & CEO
Public Storage

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