IN­DIA MOVES FOR FDI IN PROP­ERTY

New bill aims to im­prove In­dia’s im­age

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Sup­port­ers of a law that was re­cently passed by both houses of the In­dian par­lia­ment will bring more for­eign di­rect in­vest­ment in the coun­try’s prop­erty sec­tor.

Money from abroad for con­struc­tion de­vel­op­ments fell by 84 per cent dur­ing the first nine months of the cur­rent fis­cal pe­riod com­pared to the same pe­riod last year.

And many in­dus­try an­a­lysts say part of the prob­lem was bu­reau­cracy and un­clear leg­is­la­tion, which the new bill aims to im­prove.

“The bill will fa­cil­i­tate in­ject­ing FDI into In­dian real es­tate,” said Anuj Puri, chair­man and coun­try head of global real es­tate ser­vices firm JLL In­dia.

“It es­sen­tially works to­wards strength­en­ing trans­parency, in­for­ma­tion in the pub­lic do­main, ac­count­abil­ity and re­spon­si­bil­ity for de­vel­op­ers.

“It will bring over­all fi­nan­cial dis­ci­pline. The bill also pro­vides com­pre­hen­sive con­sumer pro­tec­tion which hardly ex­isted be­fore.”

Ac­cord­ing to the lat­est data by the cen­tral govern­ment’s Depart­ment of In­dus­trial Pol­icy and Pro­mo­tion (DIPP), dur­ing the first nine months of the cur­rent fis­cal year, In­dia at­tracted only Dhs37 mil­lion of FDI in con­struc­tion de­vel­op­ment. In the same pe­riod in 2014-15 the fig­ure was Dhs222 mil­lion.

In­dus­try cham­ber Ficci’s pres­i­dent Har­shavard­han Neo­tia, who is also chair­man of the Am­buja Neo­tia Group, which has in­ter­est in real es­tate, said the leg­is­la­tion would also make it eas­ier to force builders to com­plete projects on time.

He said: “The bill also aims to put in place a seam­less frame­work for re­solv­ing dis­putes be­tween builders and home buy­ers. All this is likely to im­prove the cred­i­bil­ity of the sec­tor and make it more at­trac­tive for in­vest­ment.”

The bill, which had been pend­ing since 2013, was passed by the Lok Sabha, or Up­per House of par­lia­ment, on Tues­day. The Ra­jya Sabha (Lower House) cleared it on March 10.

The new leg­is­la­tion also pro­vides for the set­ting up of Real Es­tate Reg­u­la­tory Au­thor­i­ties.

All of this is likely to im­prove the cred­i­bil­ity of the sec­tor and make it more at­trac­tive for in­vest­ment

– Har­shavard­han Neo­tia, Ficci pres­i­dent

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