Some experts say that the CEE markets are advantaged by lower leverage levels and fundamental economic catch-up. These factors may prove a vital boon as the harsher economic climate rolls across Europe, but is it enough? Is there something else we should know or think about?
Produced in association with the Financial Times and key regional business media, CEE Insight Forum IV: TROPICAL STORM (Budapest, 22 October) will undoubtedly also be a "Where were you when...?" moment, an event that formed an important bridge between the recent growth surge and more troubled waters ahead through informed discussion and debate by some of the region's top experts.
The 'A-team' of the Central and Eastern European real estate sector will gather at the event in Budapest to dig deep into this issue and understand the present and future implications, together with regional International Monetary Fund (IMF) head Christoph Rosenberg, Financial Times correspondent Thomas Escritt - and an actively participating audience. Debate will not be restricted to publicized speakers, there will be strong audience participation, perhaps even unscheduled presentations.
In view of the dramatic developments, the organizers have put out a rallying call to the sector, including lowering prices to open access and participation.
"The importance of this moment should not be under-estimated," said Richard Hallward of Imagine Events, organizer of the event, "this could be deeper and harsher than the crash of 1929, the world is far more leveraged up than it was then and, more importantly, a greater percentage of the world's population is bought into the 'economic miracle'.
"At this point in time there are lots of theories and ideas pushing around, but no one really knows what's going on, and that includes the greatest economic and business minds in Europe and across the globe. So what do we do? We need to get together and discuss this in detail, with one eye on the global market and one eye on the CEE markets.
"We've been tracking this closely since we raised the debate last October at our CEE Revolution Event, and I can tell you that right up to the top levels no one saw this coming. Our own view is that this will be very deep and nasty, but that the CEE markets may feel less pain and have a softer, sooner landing than more developed markets because they are less credit led, and will benefit from underlying economic catch-up for a further 15 years or more