Present economic slowdown will not affect Real Estate sector in view of the prevalent housing shortage in the country, increasing population and series of proactive measurers taken by the government to boost up the sector, according to leading bankers and developers of Gujarat. This optimism was expressed by them while participating in an Interactive Session on "Opportunities & Challenges in Finance & Banking for Real Estate Sector" yesterday in Ahmedabad, jointly organized by the Gujarat Chamber of Commerce & Industry and The Gujarat Institute of Housing & Estate Developers [GIHED]
Shri H.C. Patnaik, CGM of the Gujarat Circle of State Bank of India, said that there is shortage of 2.7 million housing units in urban India and India's population is increasing at the rate of 2% and therefore there is no reason for any disappointment in the Real Estate Sector. Moreover, the Central Govt. RBI and SBI has announced number of stimulus packages, for this sector, including reduction in the interest rate on housing loan. SBI has signed MOUs for an investment of Rs.30,000 crore at the recent Vibrant Gujarat Summit and 20 to 25% of the investment will be done in real estates. He assured that there will be no hurdles in sanctioning of bankable housing projects. Shri Patnaik called for speedy clearance of proposals for NA for land, reduce stamp duty, and increase FSI and limits of the areas under Municipal Corporation for rapid growth of Real Estate Sector.
Shri S. Srinivasan, CEO, Kotak Real Fund Estate urged builders and developers to reduce adequate pricing of housing units, which will automatically boost up the demand. He said that housing units in Gujarat were more affordable because of cheaper land and labour and therefore there is no serious impact of the recession in Gujarat. He was optimistic that the present situation will further improve in the next six months.
Shri Irfan Qureshi, General Manager, HDFC Ltd. appealed the developers not to be complacent or pessimistic about the present economic crisis but to face it by adopting realistic and professional approach. He was confident that we will overcome the present difficulties in one and half to two years by increasing transparency in our dealings. Shri Qureshi said increasing urbanization, shortage of dwelling units, reduced rate of interest on housing loan and tax benefits etc. will gradually revive this sector.
Shri Suresh Patel, Vice President of GIHED, said that India has not been trapped in the vicious circle of global recession ,because we have even now maintained economic growth of 7%.Millions of poor and low income group families are still deprived as basic need of housing and therefore there is no reason to have fear of receiving in housing sector. Shri Patel appealed the banks in Gujarat to co-operate with builders by providing more credit for housing projects and reduce interest rate. He said that the builders in Gujarat are realistic and conservative with higher credit worthiness. Shri Vijay Shah, Coordinator of GIHED also urged the banks to give up their over cautious approach, trust builders and provide more loan for housing projects.
Shri Rupesh Shah, President of the Chamber was confident that the economic slowdown will not affect industries in India except export oriented industries. He urged banks in Gujarat to be more helpful towards more and more industries by providing working capital to the needy industries like the diamond industry. Shri Shah said that the Government can also be helpful by undertaking infrastructure projects on a massive scale.