THE slow recovery in the oil price is starting to filter through to the commercial property sector, with activity in the Aberdeen office market sitting two thirds higher in first half of this year than the same period in 2017.

According to research from consultants CBRE Scotland, there were 50 office deals sealed in the first six months of the year, up from 30 in the same period last year.

This was in part driven by landmark buildings Marischal Square and the Silver Fin being ready to move into, with Aberdeen Journals’ decision to take 19,000 square feet in the former marking the largest letting of the period.

CBRE chartered surveyor Amy Tyler said the “improvement in sentiment” can be “mainly attributed to the increase in oil price, which peaked at just under $80 per barrel at the end of June from circa $65 per barrel at the start of the year”.

“This is beginning to filter through to the office market, where we have experienced an encouraging increase in demand for space,” she said.

Activity is also being helped by the fact that Aberdeen City Council’s plan for regenerating the city centre is focused on encouraging businesses to take space on or around the main thoroughfare of Union Street.

Last week Barclays announced that it had signed a 10-year lease on just over 3,000 square feet of space in the Silver Fin.