Tag Archives: 2012 Roundtable Final

Track2Realty Roundtable—Looking In and Looking Ahead-IX

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Track2Realty Roundtable Panelists—Dr Anil Sharma, CMD, Amrapali Group

Sunil Dahiya—Sr Vice President, NAREDCO & MD Vigneshwara Developers

Harmit Chawla—MD, HCorp Realty

PK Tripathi—President, Unitech

Moderator—Ravi Sinha, CEO & Managing Editor, Track2Realty

2012 Roundtable Final, India real estate news, Indian realty news, Property new, Home, Policy Advocacy, Activism, Mall, Retail, Office space, SEZ, IT/ITeS, Residential, Commercial, Hospitality, Project, Location, Regulation, FDI, Taxation, Investment, Banking, Property Management, Ravi Sinha, Track2Media, Track2RealtyRavi Sinha: How will the market shape up in 2013?

PK Tripathi: We have a consensus on the demand side of it. Price variation is there. Even today, I get a call for ready-to-move-in houses. Everybody has a demand and they have a budget. So, if you are able to fit into that then you are a smart mover.

We should request the government that let the entrepreneurs do whatever they want to do, provide the guidelines and get out of it. Over regulation will kill the sector, the way it hampered the growth of telecom.

Ravi Sinha: We understand that the macro-economic indicators are very vague at this moment. But the question is whether the sector is ready for change to become transparent.

Anil Sharma: Should I tell you honestly, why do you think only the sector should be transparent? The entire eco system and regulatory environment has to be transparent. If I move table-to-table for 35 approvals, it is evident that nothing is transparent.

But even in the given system the developers have changed themselves. We are ready for more improvements provided we are given a transparent system from the government side.

Ravi Sinha: And how realistic is that to expect?

Harmit Chawla: I think there are two levels of transparency. One is the micro which is at my end and then there is the macro where I come in as a businessman and is beyond my control. In India, either I can follow laws or do business. What I feel is that you will end up breaking laws not because you want to but because you don’t have an option. However, the extent of laws that you are going to break is something in your hands.

Ravi Sinha: Mr Tripathi, you have seen things from the government side. How optimistic are you of transparency coming into the sector?

PK Tripathi: It will take at least five to seven years. In the course of time, slowly technology will play a tremendous role in providing the services where slowly automatic systems are coming up. In our industry, it has happened a little slowly.

It is obvious with so many people getting indicted and so many things happening, it is going to happen.  But in one year nothing much is  going to change.

Sunil Dahiya: We did a study with a knowledge partner in 2008, it was a meltdown year. One of the big five (IPC) was our knowledge partner and we said what is the difference between 100 per cent FDI in real estate and Indian real estate developers? The answer in one line was “cutting edge technology”

Ravi Sinha: I agree that this Industry is going to see lot many positive changes ahead. I wish this change is better adopted by the sector, rather than being imposed on it and it is here that the sector has to decide whether to change themselves or you want the government side to force a change. Thank you all for a wonderful discussion.

Ends….

Track2Realty Roundtable—Looking In and Looking Ahead-VIII

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Track2Realty Roundtable 2012 Roundtable Final, India real estate news, Indian realty news, Property new, Home, Policy Advocacy, Activism, Mall, Retail, Office space, SEZ, IT/ITeS, Residential, Commercial, Hospitality, Project, Location, Regulation, FDI, Taxation, Investment, Banking, Property Management, Ravi Sinha, Track2Media, Track2RealtyPanelists—Dr Anil Sharma, CMD, Amrapali Group

Sunil Dahiya—Sr Vice President, NAREDCO & MD Vigneshwara Developers

Harmit Chawla—MD, HCorp Realty

PK Tripathi—President, Unitech

Moderator—Ravi Sinha, CEO & Managing Editor, Track2Realty

Ravi Sinha: Would any of you agree that the pipeline visibility and land bank suddenly has turned out to be a land liability?

PK Tripathi: To some extent yes, because people who have invested too much money in the land are unable to monetise it.

Harmit Chawla: I absolutely agree, the point is that some developers who are sitting on 2500 acres of land out of which they have allotted only 500 acres. Out of this around 1800 acres is under litigation, but you are stuck. You can not monetise, you can not get a PE fund, you can not do anything.

Sunil Dahiya: It took us 10 years to realise the reforms in banking, insurance etc. Those reforms of 91 were the first layer of prosperity in real estate. By the year 2000, everybody was looking at real estate as an industry, so it took us 10 years to realise that this is the prosperity made by those reforms. By 2012, we are getting a lot of brands in FDI and retail.

The next round of reforms will benefit the manufacturing sector. It will benefit everything from the manufacturing to the banking segment also and forward integration. In 2013, we should all align ourselves with this. When that job creation happens, there will be a lot of housing which has to be created and a lot of office demand and manufacturing demand.

So, we are an industry which should start thinking very loudly. We should not be unintelligent that it should take us 10 years of consensus to realise that there is no such thing as affordable housing.

Ravi Sinha: To wrap up the whole discussion in terms of looking ahead, when we look at the real estate, we see that the residential market is down, IT slowdown has affected the office space demand and retail is also down. Though there is a critical linkage between all the asset component, which are segment that will actually be catalyst to reviving the market, if at all you think that market is going to be revived.

Anil Sharma: See ultimately, the housing is the only vertical in real estate that acts as a catalyst for other verticals to grow.

Ravi Sinha: Do you see housing getting revived in the year ahead?

Harmit Chawla: It has been said in the last 15 years that commercial activity will sell the homes which is nonsense. Commercial has its own validity and I have a very clear focus on residential. Though I don’t agree with you guys that it is going to revive, this is a tough time.

…to be continued

Track2Realty Roundtable—Looking In and Looking Ahead-VII

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2012 Roundtable Final, India real estate news, Indian realty news, Property new, Home, Policy Advocacy, Activism, Mall, Retail, Office space, SEZ, IT/ITeS, Residential, Commercial, Hospitality, Project, Location, Regulation, FDI, Taxation, Investment, Banking, Property Management, Ravi Sinha, Track2Media, Track2RealtyTrack2Realty Roundtable

Panelists—Dr Anil Sharma, CMD, Amrapali Group

Sunil Dahiya—Sr Vice President, NAREDCO & MD Vigneshwara Developers

Harmit Chawla—MD, HCorp Realty

PK Tripathi—President, Unitech

Moderator—Ravi Sinha, CEO & Managing Editor, Track2Realty

Ravi Sinha: Many of the developers have realised that focus on execution and not the land bank is the key. Companies which overleveraged their balance sheets or branched out into non-core areas have failed. Developers have also learnt it the hard way that real estate is a micro market business and fancy expectations of going pan-India can boomerang. Are not these tough lessons?

PK Tripathi: Pan-India is an ambition that every developer will have depending upon the cash flows and market response. Secondly, the realisation has come to the developers that they need to self-regulate as customers have started raising their voices on principal issues. Regulator has come out of the government’s move to push pressure. And then from a finance point of view, it is coming at a project level, and not at the corporate level.

So, the developers will now onwards focus on the delivery of the projects as quickly as possible. So, focussed financing, focussed delivery, focussed customer demand and focussed regulatory environment is imminent ahead.

Sunil Dahiya: See, lot of speculation was being made that some players will collapse which did not happen in 2012 which is a good sign. It works like a pack of cards, it is not like if one falls down then others will not get affected. I feel relieved in 2012 and 2013 looks brighter. Second point what I have learnt was that every developer has to find his niche into what he is doing better.

There are certain developers who have found a very good niche in doing the affordable category. Now is the time we need to find our niches. If one tries to do cross breeding of all segments, I think that is where the occupational capabilities will differ so these are two learning that I have seen.

Ravi Sinha: Any specific emerging trend that you feel would be the norm in the year ahead?

Anil Sharma: The year 2013 is going to be the year of city development because thus far our urbanisation has been very slow. So, the coming year is going to have a good and fair development for the tier II and III cities compared to the tier I cities.

Harmit Chawla: Emerging trend is one that people share the kind of clutter that are there in the tier I cities and at the end of the day, you have to do business so you will move. There is demand happening in cities like Bhopal, which are also the tougher markets. They are not easy markets, they are very tough markets but developers will move to these markets.

PK Tripathi: I think it is consolidation and people will focus on what they have. Don’t buy any land and build upon what you have. Be very conservative and not very ambitious. Second is how do I reduce the cost of my construction?

New technology & innovation will get focussed. How do I use my resources which are important like water, electricity etc? We have to become focussed on all the inputs that we are using for development of a project.

….to be continued

Track2Realty Roundtable—Looking In and Looking Ahead-VI

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2012 Roundtable Final, India real estate news, Indian realty news, Property new, Home, Policy Advocacy, Activism, Mall, Retail, Office space, SEZ, IT/ITeS, Residential, Commercial, Hospitality, Project, Location, Regulation, FDI, Taxation, Investment, Banking, Property Management, Ravi Sinha, Track2Media, Track2RealtyPanelists—Dr Anil Sharma, CMD, Amrapali Group

Sunil Dahiya—Sr Vice President, NAREDCO & MD Vigneshwara Developers

Harmit Chawla—MD, HCorp Realty

PK Tripathi—President, Unitech

Moderator—Ravi Sinha, CEO & Managing Editor, Track2Realty

Ravi Sinha: In 2013 when most of the PE Funds are maturing, they may not be investing again in the real estate. So, from where will you generate the funds?

Anil Sharma: When there is a demand in the market, there is absolutely no problem of funds, construction etc. The moment you experience huge deficit of demand in the market it is driven by some other factors, it is not driven by real estate alone. Demand is always there because we have got a huge shortage of houses in India, in particular for middle class and lower middle class.

Let us also think about the floating population which is increasing day by day in most of the tier I and tier II cities of India. If the bank reduced half per cent in the housing loan rate, then the demand is coming up.

Ravi Sinha: One of the fundamental reasons why prices have gone unreasonably up is that most of the developers have missed their timelines. Don’t you think 2012 can be called an experimental year from that standpoint? Those developers that have delivered on time, they have sold off their inventory.

Sunil Dahiya: The financial system is so complex in India. Per acre cost of land acquisition is about 40 crore. If you plan a township of 10 acres, then you are looking at Rs. 400 crore. Now, the banker is willing to fund Rs. 1600 crore to the customer but not ready to fund Rs. 400 crore to the developer. You can’t create a hybrid with the banker, saying that you fund Rs. 400 crore, let me deliver this product line. Why are you willing to invest 1600 crore there?

The identity of the loans is different. Housing loans is different and they don’t want to convert into commercial loans. But why the disparity?

Anil Sharma: We have taken the issue with the bankers association that when we apply for credit loan, in that case they do not consider the price of the land on the part of the credit cost. I feel banks also are getting the understanding and the RBI is also a little considerate and now that Finance Minister is a little bit considerate, there is a little hope.

Ravi Sinha: No doubt, we have moved a bit in the right direction in this year. What has been the biggest learning of the year for the sector?

Anil Sharma: See, biggest learning of the sector according to me is that sector must be regulated in a self-regulatory manner. If you regulate yourself, you try to follow the rules and regulations yourself, at least you do not face huge problems.

Ravi Sinha: You are talking about self regulation becoming a norm in the year ahead. But that endeavour has failed. So, what is the learning?

Harmit Chawla: I don’t think there has been any learning. I see a lot of churning and cleansing happening and the sector is in for a very tough time over the next 9-10 months and these events over the next year might expedite the bill and other reforms.

Good or bad is a debatable thing, but yes for the larger good I think real estate will come back to a better standing by the end of 2013.

…to be continued

Track2Realty Roundtable—Looking In and Looking Ahead-V

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Track2Realty Exclusive: 

2012 Roundtable Final, India real estate news, Indian realty news, Property new, Home, Policy Advocacy, Activism, Mall, Retail, Office space, SEZ, IT/ITeS, Residential, Commercial, Hospitality, Project, Location, Regulation, FDI, Taxation, Investment, Banking, Property Management, Ravi Sinha, Track2Media, Track2RealtyPanelists—Dr Anil Sharma, CMD, Amrapali Group

Sunil Dahiya—Sr Vice President, NAREDCO & MD Vigneshwara Developers

Harmit Chawla—MD, HCorp Realty

PK Tripathi—President, Unitech

Moderator—Ravi Sinha, CEO & Managing Editor, Track2Realty

Ravi Sinha: I have a question here, and I will be very frank with Mr Tripathi. Any journalist who writes on real estate finds it very amusing that the sector has always tried to put the ball in the government’s court. Since you have been part of the government, how far will you agree to this?

PK Tripathi: I would say that the government should get out of it. Just like licensing in industries were taken out, the same way you have to adhere to a master planning, where you have an overall plan of the state on different cities and you announce it that this is the land and now you can play with it. you don’t even have to register. Whoever gets it can say these are the lands, and these are the roads and this is what you have to leave and the rest is to let the people play. The supply will be so much everywhere that it will regulate by itself.

The moment you have licensing, you are regulating the supply. The moment you are regulating the supply, that means you are controlling everything. What should happen is that infrastructure has to come first and real estate later. Maybe infrastructure and real estate companies can combine here to say that will be done by us. We don’t need any government regulatory authority to tell us what to do.

Sunil Dahiya: If I go by the precedence, India as a country has seen more development in the major cities in the unregulated settlement, in these unauthorised colonies. There may be haphazardness in the design factor but no house is without basic access of electricity or sewer. So, the growth has taken place more in an unregulated format than in the regulated format.

Ravi Sinha: You say developers should be left to do the business. Do they have the resources? 2012 has also been a year where most of the companies overleveraged their balance sheets.

PK Tripathi: See, it is how you look at it. Since 2008 there has been no money available from the bank and obviously interest rates went up and costs went up. So, when there was totally no money available from anywhere and no system by which you can raise money and the government and the RBI put the restrictions on every fund raising.

So, they should allow the banks that are a commercial entity rather than regulating from the RBI point of view. They themselves will decide whether they should give loan or not.

Sunil Dahiya: I think largely what we need to do is in 2013, we need to be courageous, as the stakeholders. NAREDCO and CREDAI should become stronger in terms of cohesion, not in terms of bodies. We have to have more members talking about creating an ecosystem which gives us money, administration, and delivery of product.

These three things are what we need to create in our ecosystem. Can we create a financial ecosystem jointly and go to the government with a solution that let’s have this ecosystem in place? It can be QIP, it can be ECB, anything but an ecosystem should exist so we should know a way to raise the money from.

…to be continued

Track2Realty Roundtable—Looking In and Looking Ahead-IV

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2012 Roundtable Final, India real estate news, Indian realty news, Property new, Home, Policy Advocacy, Activism, Mall, Retail, Office space, SEZ, IT/ITeS, Residential, Commercial, Hospitality, Project, Location, Regulation, FDI, Taxation, Investment, Banking, Property Management, Ravi Sinha, Track2Media, Track2RealtyPanelists—Dr Anil Sharma, CMD, Amrapali Group

Sunil Dahiya—Sr Vice President, NAREDCO & MD Vigneshwara Developers

Harmit Chawla—MD, HCorp Realty

PK Tripathi—President, Unitech

Moderator—Ravi Sinha, CEO & Managing Editor, Track2Realty

Ravi Sinha: All said and done, land acquisition bill is going to be a reality. What are the issues that make you so critical of it? Is it just the fresh cost of acquisition?

Anil Sharma: No, that is not that important. First of all, there must be a difference between acquisition and purchase. That act does not clearly define if I am going to buy wilfully from the landowner in a free market, how come it falls under acquisition?

Ravi Sinha: The point is NAREDCO has made certain objections to it, CREDI has certain points. Prima facie the government also seems to be concerned with the sector now. So where is the disconnect? Why could all the stake holders not evolve a consensus during the year 2012?

Anil Sharma: Real estate sector is not directly related to the land acquisition, they are a cousin of infrastructure. In 2012, we have again failed in infrastructural development because of stalemate. Every government speaks about the PPP model but whenever you go into, the real outcome of this PPP model is a big zero. You can see that no highway development has happened under the PPP model.

Again in township development this gap continues. I am going in an auction to buy government land and you are saying it falls under a PPP model. What is a PPP model? I am putting money to develop the land and only you are putting a small example that you have to create 50 dwellings for EWS. Is this a PPP model? So most of the PPP model is unsuccessful and the infrastructure companies are absolutely not taking interest.

Ravi Sinha: That is an interesting point, but don’t you think that in the year ahead we will see many real estate companies getting into infrastructure and actually going the other way round? Mr Chawla, what goaded you into infra from real estate?

Harmit Chawla: If I am serious about infrastructure that is not stemming from the fact that I see some money being made and that is why I am getting into infrastructure. I have realised that the kind of situation there is in the country where you get into the project, you really don’t know whether the ROI is going to come in ten or twenty or fifty years. You pay under the table for a hydro-power project, then you pay over the table and after that there is a land acquisition issue and so many “can’t do” caveats over your head.

So, the point is that I see more future in infrastructure in Africa and Europe than I see in India. As a businessman, if I have to put in money, why will I want to put it in a situation in my own backyard where today I really don’t know what is going to happen to the money.

Anil Sharma: The real estate sector is only consuming 3.2 per cent of the land for housing in India, and we are fighting for land acquisition act.

…to be continued

Track2Realty Roundtable—Looking In and Looking Ahead-III

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2012 Roundtable Final, India real estate news, Indian realty news, Property new, Home, Policy Advocacy, Activism, Mall, Retail, Office space, SEZ, IT/ITeS, Residential, Commercial, Hospitality, Project, Location, Regulation, FDI, Taxation, Investment, Banking, Property Management, Ravi Sinha, Track2Media, Track2RealtyPanelists—Dr Anil Sharma, CMD, Amrapali Group

Sunil Dahiya—Sr Vice President, NAREDCO & MD Vigneshwara Developers

Harmit Chawla—MD, HCorp Realty

PK Tripathi—President, Unitech

Moderator—Ravi Sinha, CEO & Managing Editor, Track2Realty

Ravi Sinha: The point here is how feasible are the wishful thoughts of the sector in 2013?

Sunil Dahiya: The commercial essence of our product has been taken out. Now the consumer is saying let me wait for something, and he is waiting in eternity for something better to come. What he is waiting for, we also don’t know. So, the consumer has been loaded with confusion, and we are loaded with a product which is dead.

Two things, outside the manufacturing process, if I don’t see the factory and come outside the manufacturing process, can the government supply us land? There is ample land available. As far as the ministry is concerned, 11 crore acres of land is available with the PSU’s in Delhi. These are PSU’s that are un-utilizing their land. They don’t know how to monetise the prime land that they are sitting on.

So, ultimately all our land supply is being under-utilised. So, do we really need to wait for a land reform act to come into place to bring that supply in? We have that ample supply available. The government just needs to decide as to whether we should sell this land, or auction this land or it should be a triple themed model. That is the whole issue. I think that commercial sense has to be installed.

PK Tripathi:  You have no choice but to have a system where you have a building model, and then houses can be done by the developers like us. With new technology, building houses can be quick. Problem is with the policies for a sector which is neither a manufacturer nor a service, despite of being the biggest contributor for the GDP.

Harmit Chawla: I think one other thing that has happened in 2012 and it started from 2011 is the absolute misuse of the word affordable housing and it has gone nowhere. You pick up Africa, you pick up Mexico, the Falkland areas, affordable housing is a globally disastrous concept. It has not picked up in any country.

I have gone through certain data from the UN. Africa has a construction cost of 1100-1300 dollar per square feet. Even if you were to supply raw material and land dirt cheap, just imagine the cost. Affordable housing cannot happen unless and until there is an absolute active participation at the policy level. It depends on the definition of the word housing. In South Delhi, a jhuggi that cost 15,000 bucks five years back has a land value of Rs. 1.5 lakh.

Anil Sharma: The land acquisition act of 1894 has got a thoroughly colonial essence. Unfortunately, after 115 years, we have been acquiring land only on the basis of that act, and taking the basis of that act to formulate a Land Acquisition Bill in 2012. You need to thoroughly change the entire hangover of that old view.

Then the law is being formulated from the central point of view, it is a Parliament act being given to the state. Every state has different demographics, different land record systems. In India, our land record system is much behind different countries.

….to be continued

Track2Realty Roundtable—Looking In and Looking Ahead-II

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2012 Roundtable Final, India real estate news, Indian realty news, Property new, Home, Policy Advocacy, Activism, Mall, Retail, Office space, SEZ, IT/ITeS, Residential, Commercial, Hospitality, Project, Location, Regulation, FDI, Taxation, Investment, Banking, Property Management, Ravi Sinha, Track2Media, Track2RealtyPanelists—Dr Anil Sharma, CMD, Amrapali Group

Sunil Dahiya—Sr Vice President, NAREDCO & MD Vigneshwara Developers

Harmit Chawla—MD, HCorp Realty

PK Tripathi—President, Unitech

Moderator—Ravi Sinha, CEO & Managing Editor, Track2Realty

Ravi Sinha: I think Mr Tripathi has a very valid point that the CCI has emerged. You have also seen the wrong side of consumer activism in a Noida Extension kind of a situation. When we think of reforms, government is looking for a regulator and a whole lot of sector’s wish list has not gone down well with the government. Do you think that the sector will move ahead with some sort of reforms in the year ahead?

Anil Sharma: See, in fact I am very positive about the regulatory bill, but when I went through the draft bill I found there are a lot of things left to be addressed. Not only the CCI, the imposition of service tax, sales tax in certain states, GST and a lot of other taxes like excise, import duty, income tax, impact of all this is being felt. So, if you are facing a lot of regulatory bodies while getting approvals, why don’t we think of one regulator who can regulate everything as in the Regulatory Act Bill? There is no need of CCI, consumer forum etc., have one taxation system.

If there is the real estate regulator, it should not target only the consumers’ problems but parallel emphasis should be given to the developers, so that the industry can move ahead smoothly. But some of the regulations which are already on the discussion table, if that come in 2013, the industry would definitely perform better.

Ravi Sinha: One regulator, single window clearance, industry status, these have been oft-repeated demands. Do you think this is practically feasible keeping in mind the fact that land is a state subject?

Harmit Chawla: You can have single window state wise. In the national perspective, I have my doubts and I don’t think it can happen. It is not that it can’t happen, but it comes across lots of friction at different level where land to the point of patwaari is involved. It is bringing too many egos and issues on the drawing board which is not possible. But, each state can make an effort in terms of their policy that once a master plan is coming in, that master plan should have everyone involved from the agriculturalist, to the urban developer to the master planner. There is one window that you have to go to.

In terms of the centre-state relations coming in between, I think that is going to be persistent. The way this federalism point has been thrown up in the last one and a half years, land is such a precious commodity that I really don’t think that state is going to give any kind of leverage to the center.

Ravi Sinha: Having said that, the fact of the matter is that Land Acquisition Bill and Real Estate Regulator Bill are now inevitable. So what are the positives that you see in these two bills, since they are going to reshape the eco system of the business ahead?

PK Tripathi: The centre has to realise that there are certain action points that are with the states and the states are not going to leave it. Having realised that, the role of the central government in any regulatory bill will be restricted to the laying down the policies for environmental clearance or approvals from central government authorities like airport authorities. All these things through technology can be made automatic. Now once you make that automatic that means that you don’t have to worry. You just apply and you should get it within a certain framework of time.

Then comes the real issue as far as the state government is concerned. State government will have to come out with their own regulatory authorities. Once they have that, then the people will know that it is possible because it is only the state departments involved. So, both will have to go together and restrict their area of indulgence.

Harmit Chawla: What I think is over and above the regulatory bill, there is a need for a proactive real estate programme which can be with the centre so the centre describes that this is how real estate in India should be developed.

…..to be continued

Track2Realty Roundtable—Looking In and Looking Ahead-I

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2012 Roundtable Final, India real estate news, Indian realty news, Property new, Home, Policy Advocacy, Activism, Mall, Retail, Office space, SEZ, IT/ITeS, Residential, Commercial, Hospitality, Project, Location, Regulation, FDI, Taxation, Investment, Banking, Property Management, Ravi Sinha, Track2Media, Track2RealtyPanelists—Dr Anil Sharma, CMD, Amrapali Group

Sunil Dahiya—Sr Vice President, NAREDCO & MD Vigneshwara Developers

Harmit Chawla—MD, HCorp Realty

PK Tripathi—President, Unitech

Moderator—Ravi Sinha, CEO & Managing Editor, Track2Realty

Ravi Sinha: I welcome all the panelists in the final roundtable for Track2Realty Focus 2013. As we come to the end of 2012, it is time to look in & look ahead as far as the prospects of the realty sector are concerned. In this discussion, we would try to wrap up the year 2012, and see where the sector has been heading to in 2013. So, when you look at the year Mr Sharma, don’t you think “oh! what a waste.” So much was expected this year but nothing has moved forward, be it in terms of administrative reforms, fiscal reforms or land reforms; nothing has gone right for the sector.

Anil Sharma: You are right. I do agree with you because real estate had a lot of expectation in the beginning of 2012. What we saw was a lot of turmoil situation; it was there right from the land row and the administrative problem. Then, there were certain issues related to policy, so many acts and by-laws and bills being brought in the parliament.

But ultimately, the year is ending without any significant improvement and I would say that it was really a rough weather for the real estate sector. If you remember from the beginning the rate of interest was too high. The RBI norms for the developers were stringent.

Thereafter, lot of stalemate and a complete mess was there, when Urban Development Ministry tried to co-ordinate the entire state and bring a consensus. But, at last we have nothing in our hand. Everything is in suspense and in the process. Then, there were a lot of debate on Real Estate Regulatory Bill, but there were a lot of shortcomings in the bill.

So, still there is debate as to whether it will be tabled again in the Parliament. Secondly, the Land Acquisition Bill has seen a lot of turmoil. Thirdly, I would say that for the regional master plan, the Urban Development Department is trying to create a consensus that if you go for a big township, you have to provide certain safeguards to create EWS (Economically Weaker Section Housing), and still every state has got different views.

Ravi Sinha: When you look at this year, don’t you think Mr Chawla it has been full of contradictions. The sector wanted something different and the government was ready with something different. Sector wanted a different model to regulate; states were not ready to do that. So, do you think it was a year of contradictions in the sector?

Harmit Chawla:  I won’t put it as contradictions as every stakeholder has his own view. State has its view, Centre has its view in terms of the policy and the sector has its view as to what is beneficial to them at the end of the day as far as the working is concerned. So, going by the point that we have been debating on the land, as Mr Sharma has also said, the fact has always been that it has been a federal issue.

The state has said that the land belongs to the state and at the end of the day they have the final call in terms of how things are going to move on that. And hence the land bill has not come, the regulatory bill has not come, and the situation has stayed the same what was two years back. So, developers today are functioning with the same lacunae that existed even two years back.

Ravi Sinha: I m not sure of how many in the sector will agree with you that we are standing where we were standing by 2010 or 2011. Mr Tripathi, do you think something has drastically gone wrong for the sector in terms of the basic psychology within which the real estate community operates or is it the same as a couple of years back?

PK Tripathi: As far as the basic psychology is concerned, what Mr Chawla is saying is correct. It remains at a status quo in the operational viewpoint. Now if you look at the policy issue, there have been efforts but it has remained at status quo since there were so many stakeholders—state versus centre, government versus the NGO and the customers. Everybody has their own aspirations and they wanted that to be met. Meeting all these aspirations takes time.

I have worked for the government and understand that either you remove everything in one go, like in 1991 where the industrial licensing was done away with one go. There was a tremendous change. You could sit at home and get a licence.

Now look at it from the government side, where CCI has emerged, some states have started the regulations. And the Central Government made an effort to try to put together two things. One is, Central Regulatory Authority which coordinates itself with the state government. So the Central government could come out with a framework that is universal with a policy issue, but the implementation can be done by the state. That has to emerge; there is no question on that.

Whatever we were doing as a builder or as a state regulatory authority, that will undergo change through technology, due to the demand of the customers, NGO’s and so many stakeholders who are evolving. The first thing is that it is a process which may not have achieved what it wanted, but may be next year we should be able to go somewhere.

Ravi Sinha: I think the industry bodies have also moved a bit in terms of doing a balancing act with the government. So, keeping that in mind how do you summarise the year Mr Dahiya?

Sunil Dahiya: If I look at the start of 2012 when we strived to become an industry, I see it as a manufacturing process and I find a factory of real estate in which raw material stopped coming in 2012. The assembly line became totally shredded so the production line got hampered. Outside, the promoters were struggling for funding.

So all in all, what I saw in 2012 was disarray in the entire manufacturing process and outside the factory the larger macro issues that reforms, laws etc were again on the drawing table. This is how I see 2012 and 2013 should be the activation of the factory.

…..to be continued