The BSE has launched an advisory group on REITs (real estate investment trusts), which are aimed at attracting long-term funds to the cash-strapped realty sector from both foreign as well as domestic investors. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley while presenting the budget last Thursday had announced tax incentives like exemption from long-term capital gains tax to popularise REITs, which could be listed on the bourses like company shares and allow retail and institutional investors to buy or sell those securities. "To orderly help develop the REITs and to make it popular among investing public, the exchange has decided to make an 11-member advisory group of experts from real estate, securities market participants like merchant bankers, legal professionals and consultants in real estate and will advise the exchange relating the newly proposed framework on REITs," BSE said in a statement. The advisory group members include Saurabh Chawla of DLF, Vinod Rohira of K Raheja Corp, DB Group's Vipul Bansal, Apurva Shah of Deutsch Equity, Deepak Chhabaria of RMZ Corp, Gesu Kaushal of Kotak Capital, Gautam Bhalla of Vatika Group, Jesal Sanghvi of Capacity Real Estate, Sanjay Chandel of Azure Capital Advisors, Shobhit Agarwal of JLL India, and Siddharth Shah of Khaitan & Co, the BSE said. According to the realty industry players, REITs can attract a whopping USD 10 billion foreign funds into the sector. REITs can bring in at least USD 10 billion of foreign funds into the sector by the end of this fiscal itself, Hiranandani Group Managing Director Niranjan Hiranandani, told PTI. REITs were originally announced in FY 2014 Budget, but at that time the government did not offer any tax sops to attract investors.
Sebi, which has already also issued draft regulations in this regard and other industry stakeholders have been demanding incentives to make this popular.