Indian real estate market is expected grow from the current level of $14 billion to $102 billion in the next 10 years, according to Shyam Prasad Reddy, managing director and chief executive officer of Indu Projects Limited.

Taking part in a panel discussion at the Indian School of Business (ISB) recently, Reddy said that reforms initiated by the government, favourable demographics, increasing purchasing power, emergence of customer friendly banks and housing finance companies would fuel the growth rate of the real estate sector in the country.

ISB, in association with Ernst & Young Private Limited, conducted its first real estate and urban studies panel discussion here.

The session, titled 'Real Estate in India - the Research Imperative', is a research initiative by the students of the Real Estate Club and the Wadhwani Centre for Entrepreneurship Development ( WCED) at the ISB.

Explaining the current real estate scenario in the country Reddy said that the shortage of 19.4 million housing units, including 6.7 million units in urban India, and mushrooming of retail projects would provide a huge opportunity for domestic as well as global infrastructure players in the country.

He, however, pointed out that Indian real estate industry was ailed by lack of transparency and credibility, an acute shortage of data and academic research and a lack of uniform laws and regulatory systems.

The other participants in the panel discussion also emphasised the need for more clarity and professionalism, particularly in the light of foreign funds and investors eyeing the Indian real estate market.

Those who took part in the discussions included Ganesh Raj of Ernst & Young, Arvind Pahwa of JP Morgan Asset Management, Nayan Shah of Mayfair Housing, Kishore Gotety of ICICI Venture Funds Management, Suresh Maramreddy of Citigroup Property Investors, KG Krishnamurthy of HDFC Property Ventures, Neel Raheja of K Raheja Corp., Ramesh Sanka of DLF, Luv Shah of Deutsche Bank REOF, Ramani Sastri of Sterling Developers, Mohit Singh of Shipra Group, Balaji Rao of Starwood Capital India and William Kistler of Urban Land Institute ( Europe).

The discussions were geared to fuel the top five list of research areas at the ISB Real Estate Research Lab and define ISB real estate research goals for the year 2007.
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