THE tight office market in Shanghai will ease next year and into 1996 when several commercial and residential projects become available, says Nicholas Brooke, a senior partner at Brooke, Hillier Parker. ''During 1995/96, it is estimated that a total of 1.4 million square metres of new commercial and residential space will come on stream, which will relieve the tight office market to a large extent,'' said Mr Brooke. But he warned there would not be much comfort for tenants this year as only 60,000 square metres of office space would be completed, far short of the demand from foreign investors. ''As a result, rentals in Shanghai are expected to increase in 1994 because little new space is expected to become available,'' said Mr Brooke at a Shanghai property seminar organised by China Law and Practice Seminars. The highest rents are in the Shanghai Centre and Shanghai International Trade Centre, where they range from US$70 to $90 per sq metre a month. Despite this, there are still long queues for these offices. The shortage of office space is forcing many investors to establish businesses in major hotels, and they could have to wait at least a year to move into proper office buildings. Mr Brooke said the residential market was equally tight as most of the developments were taken, but there would be an easing with an increase in supply during the next two years. The same could also be said of the retail market, where all existing shopping centres and department stores were fully occupied despite the relatively high rents. Another 138,000 sq metres of retail space will be ready this year, increasing to 261,000 sq metres next year and 480,000 sq metres in 1996. Most new retail projects are shopping podiums beneath commercial and residential buildings. More of these will be built across the city instead of being concentrated in Nanjing Road and Huaihai Road, as has been the trend in Shanghai.