Asian outbound investment during the first half of 2018 fell 46% from the year earlier as Chinese investors slowed down acquisition of overseas real estate assets and began disposals, according to data compiled by CBRE.

The data showed that Asian outbound capital deployment during the first half of the year fell from the $46.9bn (€40.47bn) recorded in the first half of 2017 to $25.3bn.

Despite the deceleration in Chinese outbound activity, it is expected that Asian investors will continue to be active abroad, the CBRE report said. Singaporean capital led Asian outbound investment during the first half of 2018, contributing 36% of the region’s total.

In the first half of 2018, Chinese investors decelerated acquisition of overseas assets and began disposals, particularly in the US and Europe, to improve balance sheets and to lock in profit for their early investment, the report said.

Disposals are expected to continue with some Chinese investors under finance strain looking to strengthen their balance sheet.

Tom Moffat, the head of capital markets in Asia at CBRE, said: “Asia Pacific investors are becoming increasingly recognized players and continue to expand portfolios strategically.

”The slowing of Chinese investment has prompted the emergence of more diverse capital sources, which illustrates the depth of liquidity and appetite for offshore deployment.”

Henry Chin, the head of research for CBRE in the Asia Pacific, said: “Overall, we anticipate that Singaporean, Korean and Hong Kong investors’ strong investment appetite, particularly in Europe and the US, will continue to be a key propellant of Asian outbound investment in the medium to long-term.”

This year, London continued to be a preferred channel for Asian investors, accounting for 26% of the region’s total outflows, the report showed.