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Tax reforms will make housing cheaper: HDFC's Deepak Parekh

Parekh said this has been one of the main promises made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi

Press Trust of India 

Deepak Parekh
HDFC Chairman Deepak Parekh at an interview in Mumbai.

A large number of big corporates and reputed developers are entering the affordable segment, attracted by huge tax benefits and reforms initiated by the government, eminent banker has said. He also expressed hope that real estate prices would decline more once RBI allows and firms to lend to developers for land purchases and approval processes for projects are further streamlined and shortened.

Lauding the NDA government for coordinated efforts of the Prime Minister's Office with various ministries and departments on the 'for All by 2022' mission, Parekh said this has been one of the main promises made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and several steps have been taken, especially this year, to achieve this goal.

"I will call this year's Budget an 'affordable budget'. I am very excited about growth in India in next 3-5 years and I have never been so enthused about it," Parekh told Press Trust of India in an interview. 

Parekh, Chairman of major Ltd, said the government is focusing on "practical and realistic steps" which are good for developers, consumers and even the lenders. Speaking in detail about various schemes and measures, Parekh said the government has extended the 100 per cent tax deduction scheme for affordable projects approved between June 2016 and March 2019, by two more years till 2021.

"What this effectively means is that any developer, for affordable project, has to pay zero tax. I do not know of any industry in India where you have to pay zero tax even if you make profit, other than in affordable "It shows the importance, the urgency and the critical need that requires in a vast country like ours," he said.

Parekh also said that a clear carpet area definition has been put in place for affordable units -- 30 sq meters in four metros and 60 square meters for rest of the country.

"They have also made it clear that these measurements are for municipal limits, so areas like Navi Mumbai and Thane would not have Mumbai limit of 30 sq mt. The business leader said the infrastructure status to affordable is another major benefit that builders have been given by the government and this will help lenders too.