Delhi-NCR: The crown and the jewel

Ireo Skyon, Gurgaon

Ireo Skyon, Gurgaon

For real estate players and developers, if North India is the country’s crown, then Delhi-NCR (national capital region) is the jewel on it. Dotted with malls, swanky glass and steel façade and high-rises, some of which promise a glimpse of the skyline, the region is a realtor’s delight.

While real estate players across the country are battling slowdown in sales and inventory pile-up, Delhi-NCR has largely remained immune.

Even during slowdown, the region has not witnessed a price correction either in commercial or residential segment. Prices continue to gallop as investors feel that property is an investment that cannot go wrong.

Almost all major real estate developers have a presence in the region. These include DLF, Unitech, Tata Realty, Parsvnath, Raheja, and Supertech. In the next couple of years, NCR will boast an 82-floor high rise, a well-developed Formula One Racing Track, a World Trade Centre and numerous sporting venues.

Housing Shortfall

The NCR is one of the biggest retail and real estate markets comprising nearly 27 per cent of the overall stock amongst the metros. The region has an interesting mix of retail development between the five micro-markets of Delhi, Noida, Gurgaon, Faridabad and Ghaziabad which have evolved over the years.

Shortage of housing units is expected to touch 27-30 million by 2013 and for this, huge amount is required to carry on the development.

Read more: Business Line

Realty Return up to 145%, says Knight Frank Survey

The real estate sector will continue to remain an attractive investment destination with the possibility of prices in residential areas appreciating by 91 to 145 per cent in select cities over the next five years, according to a survey by Knight Frank India. High possible return on investments ranging between 18.6 percent and 29 percent per annum over the next five years will emerge as a key driver for investors’ interest in the sector.

The report highlights that despite the slump in the real estate market, Mumbai will continue to be the most promising investment destination followed by Delhi-NCR, Chennai, Pune and Bengaluru, Knight Frank Executive Director (retail, advisory and hospitality) Gulam Zia said.

The study has identified 13 destinations across these five cities where prices are expected to appreciate in the range of 91-145 percent over the next five years, he said. With property options ranging from Rs 3,200- Rs 15,000 per sq ft and price appreciation in the range of 91 per cent to 145 per cent, residential real estate will emerge as a promising asset class for the next five years.

The Times of India

‘I wish obstacles are removed and single window clearance provided’

In the last seven years, real estate has not only attracted developers and investors but also reputed companies, high net worth investors, small and medium business houses, family offices and foreign investors. Those who missed the bus before 2007-08 have joined the bandwagon in or after 2009. Lack of investment opportunities elsewhere is also the reason for this rush to real estate.

This is one sector where delay has not been always detrimental to the project since the property could get re-rated and developer could gain due to delay in project, provided the project is not leveraged. Stress in this sector is project-specific since each project has separate balance sheet and any project that has sold 25 to 35 per cent of its properties is not likely to be under stress. So micro market stress may not reflected in specific projects.

Prices firming up

My wish for this sector is that obstacles are removed by providing a single window clearance from development authorities. Prices firm up due to delay in approvals resulting in delayed supply.

Cost of capital is high and long term funds are not available easily even for long gestation projects like townships and Special Economic Zones.

Having summarised the woes of consumer and inefficiencies of the sector let us also understand that since many new players will be joining the fray, there will be more launches in every major city in 2013.

Read more: Business Line

CCI to review procedures followed in grant of clearances

The newly formed Cabinet Committee on Investments (CCI) will have powers to review the procedure followed by ministries in granting or refusing clearances for infra and manufacturing sector projects costing more than Rs 1,000 crore.

The Cabinet Secretariat in an order last week detailed the functions of Prime Minister-headed CCI which will identify projects in sectors like infrastructure and manufacturing for their time-bound implementation.

“CCI will now look after the implementation of critical projects including the procedures involved in their clearance or refusal and the delays such projects are facing,” a source in know of the development said.

It will also come out with measures that are required for expeditious approval of such projects including simplifying rules and look at measures that will promote investment and economic growth, the source added.

The Cabinet-panel will also decide on simplification of rules and procedures followed by ministries such as forest and environment for grant of expeditious clearances in identified sectors.

Read more: My Digital FC

Markets

FDI will rein in deficit, lift markets further: Montek

India remains under invested and given the positive signals from the stock markets, there is enough reason to cheer, according to Montek Singh Ahluwalia, Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission.

Investors’ contribution by way of foreign direct investment to the country will go a long way in reining in the fiscal deficit and lift the sentiments further, he said.

This message should be delivered to overseas Indians, as the country seeks to engage the Diaspora in India’s growth story, he said while addressing a plenary session at the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas here.

Quoting recent reports of Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley, Ahluwalia pointed out that the Sensex is bound to touch the 23,000 mark by the end of 2013.

The Nifty may see a 17 per cent rise in 2013, next only to Korea and China, he added.

He pointed out urbanisation was taking place at a rapid pace and the country needed to create the required infrastructure.

Positive mood

Speaking on the occasion, Naina Lal Kidwai, President of FICCI, said the surge in stock markets is an indication of the positive mood in the economy. India could become the preferred destination for investment, she said.

Remittances up

“We have continued to receive considerable remittances from the Indian Diaspora, which is our underlying strength.

“In 2012, we received $80 billion, leaving China behind with $76 billion,” she said.

Pushing the knowledge frontiers such as education and skilling could contribute immensely to the economic growth of the country and FICCI remained committed to pursue this vigorously, she added.

Business Line

IT

Gurgaon, Noida set to eclipse Bangalore in IT space

North India has emerged a hot spot for IT and IT-enabled services industry with many large companies setting up their businesses here. While Shimla and Chandigarh are among the top cities with investment potential, it is the National Capital Region, including Gurgaon and Noida, that is becoming the preferred destinations for companies offering IT, ITeS, BPO, BTO and KPO services in various domains such as banking, financial services, insurance, pharma, auto, FMCG and manufacturing.

According to a study by Assocham, Bangalore may lose its crown of India’s Tech Eden to Gurgaon and Noida. The study showed that leading IT and ITeS vendors prefer to shift their focus from Bangalore to other cities — especially the satellite cities of Gurgaon and Noida — to generate more revenues.

Assocham interacted with around 800 directors, CEOs, CFOs, chairmen and managing directors of Indian and multinational companies in various verticals with a choice of five cities to relocate their businesses to garner more revenues.

Conducive environment

As many as 30 per cent of the top-ranked officials of IT companies based out of Bangalore said they prefer to shift their business to Gurgaon. Of the remaining, 25 per cent respondents said they would prefer to shift their base to Noida or Greater Noida which are rapidly developing software and BPO hubs. About 20 per cent said that they would prefer to shift their base to Chandigarh, which offers a conducive business environment.

Read more: Business Line

Employment

India Inc may double NRI hiring this year

A growing desire in India Inc to induct global talent with international exposure is expected to result in a near doubling in the recruitment of non-resident Indians (NRIs) this year.

The country is expected to hire around 50,000 NRI professionals this year, compared to 27,983 recruited last year, finds a survey by a global recruitment tendering platform My-HiringClub .com.

Bangalore will lead this recruitment, accounting for 11,894 jobs, followed by Delhi-NCR and Mumbai with 10,320 and 6,780 jobs respectively.

Among the sectors surveyed , IT & ITeS is expected to create 11,450 jobs, followed by FMCG (8,930), automobile & manufacturing (7,341), infrastructure (4,894), pharma & healthcare (3,245), telecom (1,391) and banking & financial services (1,391).

The study was conducted across 4,453 companies operating in 12 industry verticals in 11 major cities. NRIs have become a valuable resource given that a number of Indian companies are expanding globally.

They may also be a culturally better fit than other expats . NRIs are also becoming easier to hire given the economic uncertainties in the developed world. “For senior hires in the IT sector, salary is not the differentiator any more. They face some sort of a glass ceiling in overseas markets due to the subdued sentiments there,” says Kamal Karanth, MD of recruitment firm Kelly Services.

Read more: The Economic Times

Govt to review jobs scheme for J&K youth

In the wake of Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi’s renewed interest in improving the employability of young people in Jammu and Kashmir, the government has called 22 corporate partners to review its skills training programme in the state.

“The government has called all the partners for the first time to review the progress made so far,” said a government official, requesting anonymity.

Among companies invited to the review meeting are HCL Technologies Ltd, Tata Consultancy Services Ltd (TCS), Future Group, HCL Infosystems Ltd, Yes Bank, Apollo Hospitals and Infosys Ltd, show official documents, reviewed by Mint.

NTPC Ltd and Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd, too, will be part of the review meeting.

The ambitious Udaan programme, launched in June 2011, aims to train and provide employment to 40,000 youngsters in the troubled state over five years.

Participants in the review meeting will discuss ways to implement the scheme better and how more companies can be roped in as partners. “Forty thousand is the initial target; if more corporate houses join the scheme, then the target could be revised,” said the official mentioned above.

Read more: Mint

Health Services

Soon, Colonies to Have Clinics for Special Kids

Children with learning disabilities and people with special educational needs would soon be able to visit multidisciplinary clinics near their homes. Currently, the Capital does not boast of many such facilities, but thanks to a recent modification in the Master Plan of Delhi 2021, multidisciplinary clinics for learning disabilities have been allowed to operate from residential areas, provided they meet the minimum criteria. In a recent notification, the Ministry of Urban Development has permitted such clinics as an activity under the category of ‘Clinic’ in the Master Plan.

Hindustan Times  (Page 7)

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