Delhi’s CP office spaces world’s fifth-most costly

Five of the six most expensive office areas in the world are in Asia, as demand by global companies to locate there outstripped the supply, according to a semi-annual report released on Thursday by real estate services company CBRE. For the third consecutive time, Hong Kong’s Central Business District had the highest overall occupancy cost, which includes local taxes and service charges. Hong Kong’s Central averaged $235.23 per sq ft annually at the end of March, leading London’s West End at $222.58. Beijing’s Finance Street followed at $195.07 per sq ft with Beijing’s central business district right behind at $187.06. At No. 5, New Delhi’s Connaught Place’s occupancy cost was $178.96 per sq ft with Hong Kong’s West Kowloon area at $173.90, according to the report that covers 127 markets around the globe. “Demand is coming from a lot multinational corporations who want to place a stake into these developing economies,” said Raymond Torto, CBRE’s global chief economist.

Read more:  Financial Chronicle | The Economic Times  | The Tribune 

Project progress are Ireo Uptown, located in Sector 66 Gurgaon. Photos as of June 1, 2013

Project progress are Ireo Uptown, located in Sector 66 Gurgaon. Photos as of June 1, 2013

Home prices inflated; aggressive lending dangerous: Deepak Parekh

Terming the home prices as highly inflated in the country, including in smaller cities, industry leader Deepak Parekh on Friday asked builders to focus on affordable housing, rather than luxury homes, and said it is a dangerous thing to lend aggressively to developers.

Parekh, Chairman of the country’s largest housing finance company HDFC, also asked the home buyers to be cautious of ‘too-good-to-be-true’ offers from the property developers and warned them against schemes where builders claim of paying interest on the borrowers’ loans.

The eminent banker also asked the financing companies to stay away from innovative and aggressive loans, including teaser rates where the interest rates rise gradually and lending money to developers at the same rate as being offered on individual home loans.

Read more: The Economic Times

People are not buying enough property

Buyers must do due diligence before buying property, says J.C. Sharma of Sobha Developers. With property sales and prices stabilising in most markets, this is perhaps the right time to look at what may be in store for the coming years. Business Line spoke to J.C. Sharma, Vice-Chairman and Managing Director, Sobha Developers, a Bangalore-based listed real estate company, who shared his positive outlook for the sector — not just in the metros but also in tier-2 and tier-3 cities. Edited excerpts:

What is the mood of the property buyers currently?

People are not buying enough. The actual users shouldn’t be complaining as the interest rates are declining and the prices are also under control. With Rs 18,800-crore revenue, Sobha is the largest real estate developer in South India and the third largest in India. I honestly don’t think the Indian real estate market is so small. Many buyers who have the financial means and ability to buy a home, are still not buying.

Read more:  The Hindu Business Line 

Economy

Per capita spending rises 19 percent in rural areas, 17 percent in towns

India’s per capita expenditure rose at a rapid pace during the last two years, increasing 19 percent annually in rural areas and 17 percent in urban areas, which indicates rising income and a reduction in poverty levels. Latest data put out by the ministry of statistics and programme implementation show monthly per capita expenditure (MPCE), measured in terms of uniform reference period, for urban areas rising to Rs 2,399.24 in 2011-12 from Rs 1,785.81 in 2009-10. Rural MPCE rose faster to Rs 1,278.94 from Rs 9,27.70 during the same period. The data showed urban households spend 42.6 percent on food, 6.9 percent on education, 6.7 percent on fuel and light, 6.2 percent on rent and 6.4 percent on clothing. In case of rural households, the spending on food is 52.9 percent while it is 8 percent for fuel, 7 percent on clothing and 6.7 percent on medical costs.

Read more:  The Financial Express  

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh steps in to salvage growth slowdown

With the manufacturing sector growth on a crawl and investor sentiment in the doldrums, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has summoned top ministers for a high-level meeting to try and alter the course of India’s floundering growth narrative. The bulwark of job creation and value addition in the economy, the manufacturing sector had grown by 2.7% in 2011-12, but slowed further to a mere 1% in 2012-13, dragging India’s growth in the year to the lowest point in a decade.

The PM has summoned an urgent meeting in the first week of July with finance minister P Chidambaram, industry and commerce minister Anand Sharma and steel minister Beni Prasad Verma, among others.

The meeting will deliberate and decide upon some key projects and areas. The agenda for the meeting includes discussions on setting up a mission to develop civilian transport aircraft in India to boost investments in the aviation sector that has recently been opened up further to foreign direct investments.

Coupled with the aviation sector, the government also plans to explore setting up of a pilot project to develop India’s hybrid cars that can be operated on alternative energy sources. This is being done with an aim to have an Indian version of hybrid cars that could be an affordable alternative, moving away from conventional fuel.

Read more: The Economic Times

No need to panic over rupee’s fall: Chidambaram

The rupee had slumped to a record low of 59.9850 to the dollar on Thursday, following the U.S. Federal Reserve’s statement on its plan to wind down the monetary stimulus.

“We are not insulated from what is happening in the rest of the world,” Chidambaram said at a press conference. “My request is we should not react and panic. It is happening around the world.”

Chidambaram said policymakers were monitoring the rupee and the Reserve Bank of India would do whatever was needed to stem the fall.

Read more: Reuters

Non-metro emerging cities to aid retailers’ growth

Non-metro major emerging cities of Jaipur, Kochi, Ludhiana, Indore, Nagpur and Udaipur are being perceived as the upcoming cities that retailers are considering with growing seriousness. In a report compiled by real estate consultancy company Jones Lang LaSalle, these non-metro major cities are emerging as lucrative locations for retailers and brands. They are attracted by the increasing incomes and rising brand awareness among consumers there. A substantial number of shopping malls are being planned or are already under development in these cities. According to their research findings, sales in the modern retail stores in these cities are quite encouraging. This is expected to pave way for organised retail. Pankaj Renjhen, Managing Director, Retail Services, Jones Lang LaSalle India, said the expansion is often a challenge in a curtailed economic environment. Retailers who wait too long to expand into new territories or are content to stay where they are, are missing the growth wave and will eventually lose their market relevance.

Read more:  The Hindu Business Line 

Entertainment

Delhi to get more multiplexes soon

Delhi became the first city in the country to have a four-screen multiplex back in 1997 with PVR Saket and as of today has 25 multiplexes. And quite a few more just may be added to the list very soon. The Delhi Development Authority (DDA) may soon authorise seven “temporary” cinemas in the city. Sources in the DDA said some of these cinemas would be able to convert to multiplexes according to the prescribed development control norms. These temporary cinema halls — Swarn in Vishwas Nagar, Seble in Badarpur, Lokesh near Rohtak Road, Suraj in Najafgarh, Hans in Azadpur, Raj in Tilak Nagar and Chandralok in Chittaranjan Park — have been operating for nearly four decades but according to the Master Plan of Delhi, are not categorised as cinema halls and were running on licences.

Read more:  Hindustan Times 

NRI News

Weak rupee: NRIs’ relatives back home to get more rupees

A weak rupee could end up in higher local currency realisation for thousands of households who rely on remittances from their close family overseas and boost dollar inflows.A weak rupee could end up in higher local currency realisation for thousands of households who rely on remittances from their close family overseas.

India received $68.66 billion in 2012, according to RBI data. Remittances through private transfers comprise inward remittance from Indian workers abroad for family maintenance, local withdrawals and redemptions from non-resident deposits, gold and silver brought into the country through passenger baggage, besides personal gifts or donations to charitable and religious institutions in India. “It could be the case that campaign funds are categorised as remittances,” said an economist with an American bank.

Over the years, remittance by overseas Indians has helped bolster the country’s foreign exchange reserves as these are considered far more enduring flows compared to portfolio flows which are more volatile.

Read more: The Economic Times

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