[TechSparks 2020] Square Yards CEO on why India’s GDP cannot bounce back with the real estate sector still struggling
Real estate has been one of the hardest hit sectors in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, and as Square Yards CEO Tanuj Shori rightly puts it, the last six months have been, ‘soul crushing.’
Even as the government expects the GDP to return to an 8.8 percent growth rate next year, Tanuj feels this is a lofty estimate.
“India’s GDP cannot return to near 9 percent with the real estate sector continuing to struggle. The government needs to focus and take steps to intensify demand, reduce stamp duty charges and more,” he said, speaking at YourStory's TechSparks 2020 event.
There is, however, a glimmer of hope on the back of the revival witnessed in the residential real estate market.
“Residential real estate is on the path to recovery. Retrospectively, the last two to three months have seen a sizable improvement — something I would not have anticipated. New projects have sold out in two weeks — used to happen in pre-COVID days. The impact of the pandemic has been much larger on commercial real estate, and I see it deteriorating further,” said Tanuj.
Even as corporates that were expanding are now renegotiating their real estate expenditure, the gap between demand and supply has become wider than ever before, making the smaller players in the commercial estate space bleed further.
Perhaps the only silver lining, Tanuj added, is the fact that India, which was not an investor market for real estate, has slowly started moving in that direction as buyers try to take advantage of the low prices brought on by the pandemic. In fact, he expects that residential real estate could go back to pre-COVID-19 levels by the next quarter.
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