Having an impressive portfolio of contemporary commercial, residential, IT park and retail developments, Gurgaon-based BPTP now claims to be setting new benchmarks in luxury housing with various projects across the NCR. Edited excerpts of an interview with Sandeep Bedi, director-systems & strategy, BPTP Ltd.
The property market might be in a bad shape for some time now, but prices are still increasing, especially in metro cities. Localities in Delhi-NCR have been prices appreciate by double-digit percentages over the last two years. What is your view on this?
I would not say that the property market is in a bad shape. The sector is going through a challenging phase, but developers with a long-term vision will overcome these challenges. I think the prices in key mirco-markets of NCR are increasing due to multiple factors. Rising land costs due to scarcity of land around the existing social infrastructure is one major reason. The NCR is witnessing an increase in demand for luxury homes and villas. Locations like Noida-Greater Noida Expressway, the Dwarka Expressway & Southern Peripheral Road in Gurgaon, Gurgaon-Faridabad Expressway and have been many new project launches.
The Times of India (Financial Times, page 3)
Realty capital value growth highest in Pune, NCR-Delhi
The realty capital value growth in Pune and NCR-Delhi was the highest amongst seven top cities in the country during 2012 and the average capital value growth in the country was between 1-3 per cent, according to real estate consultancy Jones Lag Lasalle.
Hyderabad and Bangalore saw slower rate of capital value growth and there is still no price correction on cards. However, the quantum of appreciation definitely reduced significantly in all the top seven cities in the country.
Like in the past, Mumbai and NCR-Delhi recorded higher absorption with Chennai and Pune as the other two cities which witnessed increased demand and absorption.
According to a statement from Anuj Puri, Chairman and Country Head, Jones Lang Lasalle, at the country level, 1,60,622 residential units were launched in 2012, as against 1,54,701 units in 2011. The average residential capital values appreciated in the range of 1-3 per cent year on year.
The high inflation impacted the sentiment and investor interest across businesses, including real estate.
The secondary business districts of Mumbai, Bangalore and Pune followed by central business districts of Bangalore and in Hyderabad, began emerging as landlord markets. This is primarily because these areas have lower than average vacancy levels from a national perspective. They command higher rentals. Among top seven cities, Mumbai and NCR-Delhi recorded drop in year on year absorption.
Read more: Business Line
Govt ups efforts to tackle urban housing shortage
In a bid to tackle urban housing shortage and to achieve the targets of providing housing to people under the National Building Code (NBC), the urban development ministry will hold a meeting with developers, financial institutions, law firms and suppliers to discuss the way forward.
Also on agenda will be the proposal of setting up a real estate regulator, finalising a mechanism which that help in streamlining of the various clearances required and the procedures involved.
Currently, urban housing shortage is estimated at 18.78 million with 95% in the lower income group (LIG) and economically weaker sections (EWS) categories. This, as per experts, may go upto 38 million by 2030 if the rate of supply remains at the current level. As of now, nearly 28% of India’s population lives in cities and urban areas—which is likely to rise to 40%by 2020.
“The meet will lay down a platform to address issues such as abolition/redefining old working systems… Bylaws, Acts, rules, regulations and giving a fresh look after interaction with the private sector,” a government official said.
Read more: Financial Express
New road to speed up South Delhi traffic to Faridabad
In what will be a major relief to south Delhi commuters bound for Gurgaon and Faridabad, Delhi government’s public works department is undertaking construction of a four-lane road from Mehrauli-Gurgaon Road to Gurgaon-Faridabad road.
This 9km corridor is expected to help commuters from Mehrauli, Greater Kailash, Chhattarpur, Saket etc avoid jams on NH-8 and NH-2. The Rs 597-crore project will be funded by the urban development ministry, said officials.
Link road report likely soon
“The road, called Mandi Road, exists now as a two-lane road riddled with potholes and without a central verge. Widening this road to a four-lane double carriageway will help commuters bypass the more long-winding and congested routes currently available,” said PWD minister Raj Kumar Chauhan.
The road will begin on MG Road, go through Gwala Pahari and end at the Gurgaon-Faridabad road, providing the shortest connect with Faridabad from south Delhi, said officials.
Read more: The Times of India
Gurgaon roads get a new lease of life
Until last year, driving in the city used to be a nightmarish experience, owing to the poor condition of the roads. Now, things have improved and most interior roads in the city are not only pothole-free but also wider than before.
A major part of the credit for this goes to Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) administrator Praveen Kumar, as these developments started taking place only after he assumed office last year.
Apart from the road conditions having improved, according to HUDA sources, the two major roads in the city – MG Road and Sohna Road – will don a new look in the next three months.
Kumar said an amount of Rs 21 crore has been deposited with the Public Works Department (PWD) for the work on MG Road, which will begin soon. Likewise, Sohna Road will be developed at a cost of Rs 46 crore. The deadlines for both the roads are around three months away, he added.
Commuters too are happy with the visible changes. “It was next to impossible to drive in the city during monsoon, when even all the semblance of roads would vanish, be it the Golf Course Road, MG Road or any other city road, said Jitender Singh, a resident of Old Gurgaon.
Read more: Times of India
Bankers to get more powers in road projects
The government is set to make amendments to the model concession arrangement for road projects that will give more functional and supervisory powers to banks, according to an official.
The move is aimed at speeding up execution of road development projects, which are often held up due to various factors including financing issues. Tardy progress in improving road infrastructure is often cited as impediment to economic growth in Asia’s third largest economy.
“In the event of suspension of a concessionaire or the company that was awarded the project, banks will now be allowed to step into project agreements,” the official from the ministry of road, transport and highways said.
The official explained that the amendment would allow lenders to carry out internal scrutiny and advise the highways authority on selection of the new company for the project.
At present, bankers have no say in the selection of a concessionaire, and this acts as a deterrent for banks that are approached for credit. Bankers say the proposed change will help projects where the present developer is non-performing and banks fear that the account will turn into a bad loan. “It will also have a deterrent impact on developers as they know that banks can initiate action against underperformance,” said the chief general manager of a state-run bank.
Read more: The Economic Times
Govt to clear lenders’ road project blocks
In an attempt to revive lenders’ interest in highway projects, the government is planning to provide them the comfort of being able to change the concessionaire in the event of suspension. At a recent meeting attended by representatives from the ministry of finance, Planning Commission, the roads and highways ministry and NHAI, it was decided to include an explicit provision to this effect in the model concession agreement (MCA).
Currently, the relevant clause — Article 5.2.4 of MCA — does not clearly provide for the lender to step in and take over the project or propose a new buyer to recover loans, making it difficult for it to recover loans from the developer or NHAI in case of any failure in project execution/revenue mobilisation.
Sources said the meeting agreed on the need for NHAI to physically hand over 80% of the land (right of way) to the developer before he is appointed by the authority. In the case of new alignment including bypass, 100% of the road portion will be in NHAI’s physical possession before the appointed date. This decision was taken in view of the “failure of NHAI” in making available all the requisite land for projects in time, due to which developers often fail to start operations as scheduled and meet toll targets.
Read more: Financial Express
International property consultant DTZ to help Air India unlock realty assets
Air India has appointed international property consultant DTZ as the transaction advisor for monetizing its 108 realty assets in India and abroad in a bid to lower its debt burden, said a top official of the airline.
Air India had opened the financial bids for this mandate in last week of October. Through this property monetisation programme, the national carrier is planning to raise around Rs 5,000 crore over the next 10 years by unlocking value of properties that are unused and underutilised.
DTZ declined to comment for the story. “We won’t be able to comment on Air India deal as of now,” said a DTZ spokesperson.
Top six property consultants had shown interest at technical-bids level to execute this property monetisation programme for Air India. However, only four – Jones Lang LaSalle India, Cushman & Wakefield, DTZ and Colliers India – had submitted their financial bids.
“For asset monetisation, we have put 10 properties on fast track, including an employees’ housing colony at Nerul (in Navi Mumbai), flats in Mumbai and Hong Kong and property in Chennai,” said Air India CMD Rohit Nandan.
Read more: The Economic Times
Dena Bank waives off processing fee for home, car loans
After most public sector banks, now Dena Bank has waived off the entire processing fee for housing and car loans.
It has also waived off half of the processing fee for personal and gold loans. The offer is valid up to December 31, the bank said in a statement.
The public sector lender has also extended 50 per cent concession in processing fee for its Dena Trade Finance Scheme under which credit facilities up to Rs 2 crore are extended within the eligibility criteria of the scheme.
In addition, a scheme for doctors with credit facilities up to Rs 2 crore is extended for setting up clinic and purchasing medical equipment.
With effect from September 4, 2012, the rate of interest on housing loans range between 10.45-11 per cent, car loans from 11-12 per cent, education loans at 12 per cent and personal loans from 13-14 per cent.
See article: Business Line
Govt approves scheme for setting up 20 IITs in PPP mode
Government has approved a scheme for setting up 20 IITs in PPP mode with an overall outlay of Rs 2,808.71 crore, the Lok Sabha was informed today.
In a written reply, Union Minister of State for HRD Shashi Tharoor said, “While land for the purpose would be made available free of cost by state governments concerned, an IIT would be established at a capital cost of Rs 128 crore each to be contributed in ratio of 50:35:15 by centre, state and industry partner respectively.”
On entry of corporate sector in technical education, he said, “AICTE has allowed public/private limited company/ industries with Rs 100 crore turnover for last three years to establish a new technical institution in engineering and technology, pharmacy, architecture and town planning, hotel management and catering technology.”
Replying to a separate question on pending cases of new IITs, he said, “Based on the recommendations of Scientific Advisory Council to the Prime Minister and also having regard to the regional imbalance, government during 11th Five Year Plan established eight new IITs.”
These institutes were opened in Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Rajasthan, Odisha, Madhya Pradesh, Punjab, Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh.
Read more: Business Line