Govt working with RBI, reworking laws to help distressed home buyers: FM

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and Sebi Chairman Ajay Tyagi ring the closing bell to conclude the silver jubilee celebrations of the NSE, in Mumbai on Tuesday | Photo:PTI
Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Tuesday said that the real estate sector needs the government’s attention and the Centre is working with the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) towards tweaking the existing laws to make them conducive for the sector. 

“The sluggishness in the sector needs to be addressed and we are glad to tell you that we have alternative funds approaching us,” Sitharaman told media persons during the silver subilee celebrations of the National Stock Exchange (NSE).

She said many sovereign funds are interested in the real estate sector of the country and want to work with the government. “There are many alternative funds which are now approaching us, saying we would like to do something with you, as long as there is some supporting mechanism available for reviving the realty sector.” 

She said several homebuyers are also asking the government to help them. Reviving the real estate sector will also help other core industries and push employment, she said. 

The finance minister accepted that the real sector has not been part of the government’s economy booster plant but now her ministry is ready to focus on it. “The government and the RBI are working to address the pains of the realty sector; until now, we have not touched this critical sector as part of the measures. We have done a lot of work to push consumption since August, but have not touched the real estate sector,” she said.

The realty sector has been struggling for the last three years and has not revived since demonetisation and the introduction of good and services tax (GST). Many bankers have already made it clear that they are extremely cautious while lending to the real estate sector. The sector is struggling with severe liquidity issues and imbalance of supply and demand.

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