DELHI: Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation Minister Girija Vyas today said the real estate sector, which is grappling with problems like manpower shortage, should be encouraged to boost the economic growth of the country.
Speaking at an event organised by CREDAI, Vyas said the urban population has registered a decadal growth of approximately 32 percent.
"There is a large stake in ensuring that cities and towns are efficient in order to help India achieve an eight percent GDP growth and to contribute to other developmental goals. Real estate has the potential to create the right economic environment for such a population expansion," Vyas said.
She said the sector is the second largest employer after agriculture and its multiplier effect on other industries is well known. The potential of this sector to create a positive impact on Indian economy should be encouraged, she said.
She added India's real estate sector continues to struggle with manpower shortage and by 2022 it alone will need 30 percent of the human resources which amount to 24.98 million personnel.
Vyas also said that due to ever-growing urbanisation "our cities face problems of land shortage, housing shortfall and severe stress on basic amenities and services."
"2011 census puts the slum population at about 18 percent of total urban population. As per my ministry's estimates, the housing shortage in India today is 18.78 million households, out of which 95 percent is for Economically Weaker Sections (EWS) and Lower Income Group (LIG) categories," she said.
Vyas said this is "an alarming" situation and added that to prevent proliferation of slums has been an objective of the National Urban Housing and Habitat Policy 2007.
She said private developers had a big role to play in this area and low-budget housing, when subjected to mass production, made a great business opportunity with a social cause.