German discount retailer Lidl applied this year for 14 exemptions to Hungary’s ban on building stores larger than 300 square meters (3,300 square feet). None were approved. The restriction on large retail outlets, approved by Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s government in January, is adding further pain to a Hungarian commercial property market stung by taxes and penalties that have prompted banks to slash lending. The Economy Ministry rejected 35 of the 96 applications it received this year from companies wanting to build stores bigger than the size limit. Another seven were suspended or closed.
Orbán banning Hungarian malls deepens property pain: mortgages