What Budget 2018 Offered Real Estate Sector

Here is what Finance Minister Arun Jaitley offered Indian real estate sector in Budget 2018.

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NEW DELHI: Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Thursday presented his fourth budget.

Here is what the finance minister announced in Budget 2018:

Affordable Housing Fund

Government will also establish a dedicated Affordable Housing Fund (AHF) in National Housing Bank, funded from priority sector lending shortfall and fully serviced bonds authorized by the Government of India.

National Housing Bank

National Housing Bank Act is being amended to transfer its equity from the Reserve Bank of India to the Government. Indian Post Offices Act, Provident Fund Act and National Saving Certificate Act are being amalgamated and certain additional people friendly measures are being introduced. To provide the Reserve Bank of India an instrument to manage excess liquidity, Reserve Bank of India Act is being amended to institutionalize an Uncollateralized Deposit Facility. Securities and 23 Exchange Board of India, Act 1992, Securities Contracts (Regulation) Act 1956, and Depositories Act 1996, are being amended to streamline adjudication procedures and to provide for penalties for certain infractions. These proposals are in the Finance Bill.

REITs

The Government and market regulators have taken necessary measures for development of monetizing vehicles like Infrastructure Investment Trust (InvIT) and Real Investment Trust (ReITs) in India. The Government would initiate monetizing select CPSE assets using InvITs from next year.

Circle Rates

Currently, while taxing income from capital gains, business profits and other sources in respect of transactions in immovable property, the consideration or circle rate value, whichever is higher, is adopted and the difference is counted as income both in the hands of the purchaser and seller. Sometimes, this variation can occur in respect of different properties in the same area because of a variety of factors including shape of the plot and location.

In order to minimize hardship in real estate transaction, Jaitley proposed that no adjustment shall be made in a case where the circle rate value does not exceed 5% of the consideration.

Smart Cities

Smart Cities Mission aims at building 100 Smart Cities with state-of-the-art amenities. I am happy to inform that 99 Cities have been selected with an outlay of Rs 2.04 lakh crore. These cities have started implementing various projects like Smart Command and Control Centre, Smart Roads, Solar Rooftops, Intelligent Transport Systems, Smart Parks.

Projects worth Rs 2,350 crore have been completed and works of Rs 20,852 crore are under progress. To preserve and revitalize soul of the heritage cities in India, National Heritage City Development and Augmentation Yojana (HRIDAY) has been taken up in a major way.

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