Santhosh Kumar, Vice Chairman – ANAROCK Property Consultants

The Finance Minister’s fifth union budget on 1st February 2018 was probably one of the most closely-followed events for the Indian business community.

Not only was it the final budget before the 2019 general elections, but strong rumours of a populist Budget were sending all sorts of mixed signals to various industries.

In any case, all sectors – and specifically real estate – had harboured considerable hopes from this Budget. Battered and bruised after demonetization, RERA and GST, the sector looked forward to at least some major announcements that could re-inject the market into a growth trajectory.

Above all, real estate players fervently hoped for the long-awaited and long-elusive infrastructure status. The logistics sector and affordable housing had received it sometime back, but the market needs the benefits of infrastructure status on a much broader spectrum.

Expectations notwithstanding, the real estate industry got neither infrastructure status or, for that matter, any additional direct policy push from Union Budget 2018-19.

Why is infrastructure status so important for any sector?

How can this status impact the country’s economy at large?