Retailers will ramp up their expansion plans across the EMEA region next year, prompted by a renewed confidence in the sector.

According to property agent CB Richard Ellis’ report How Active are Retailers in EMEA? 77% of retailers are planning to open more than 5 stores in the region by the end of 2011, compared with just under half last year.

19% of retailers asked are planning to open 40 or more new stores in 2011, compared with only 13% in last year’s survey.

Germany remains the most attractive market to expand into, with 41% of retailers targeting the country.  Peter Gold, head of EMEA cross border retail at CBRE, said Germany is attractive because of its macro economics, its big population, and the fact that it has a “number of cities with a million people”. This compares with the UK and France which are dominated by London and Paris respectively.

Poland, France and Spain follow, and the UK came fifth, up from seventh last year. “The UK is seen as an important market to reinforce a retailer’s international credentials,” said Gold. “Retailers such as Primark, Superdry and All Saints demonstrate the success you can have in the UK. They demonstrate it’s the fashion capital of Europe.”

Retailers are largely targeting markets they are already in, as opposed to new markets, in order to “limit risk”, according to Gold.

However he highlighted that some are also dipping their toe in secondary markets too, due to the lack of developments planned in primary markets.