Singapore Plans to act as Facilitator to bring China’s savings into Indian Real Estate

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Singapore plans to act as a facilitator to bring in China’s savings into the Indian economy and other South Asian countries. Similarly, it has evinced interest in promoting the concept and practices of real estate investment trust (REIT) in India, reports Business Line. These were some of the immediate spin-off ideas that emerged during the South Asian Diaspora Convention (SADC), which was held here late last week. Hosting the first-ever global event under the SADC banner, Gopinath Pillai, chairman of the Singapore-based Institute of South Asian Studies (ISAS), said the conference was designed as a confluence of scholars, businessmen, thinkers and the doers.

Speaking at the Diaspora meeting, Chong Siak Ching, president and chief executive officer of the Singapore-based Ascendas, said the adoption of a REIT model came into worldwide vogue as a doable business practice in early 2000. On the moves towards a REIT regime in India, Chong said: “I think the Indian Government did look into the possibility of coming up with REIT regulations but I don’t think that it has developed to a stage where it is ready. “We had given our suggestions to the Indian Government officials in terms of what would be some of the critical success-factors for a good REIT regime to be in place. There has been no response, not yet. I believe China is now more advanced than India in terms of studying this possibility of adopting a REIT regime.”

On a macro-level, economic prospect on the China-India front, Piyush Gupta, Chief Executive Officer of Singapore’s DBS Group Holdings and DBS Bank, said the City-State could play a “definite” role as a “conduit for [China's] RMB (Renminbi) flows into South Asia.” Gupta said, “China and India have tremendous sources of savings and will continue to have in the foreseeable future. For obvious reasons the flow of money does not work directly very well. Working through Singapore, for that flow to be intermediated, is a savings management issue. Independent of this, China is now carefully pacing out the internationalisation of RMB as a reserve currency”.

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