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#Optimism: ‘Modi election has made India a great place to invest’ – Donald Trump

The election of Narendra Modi has attracted a dazzling array of investors to India in recent months and the latest is flamboyant American real estate billionaire Donald Trump.

‘The Donald’, as the outrageously-coiffed real estate tycoon is known, is reportedly planning “substantial investments” in the Indian property sector, betting on Mr Modi’s efforts to revive the country’s economic growth.

“I do see India as a great place to invest, and I think the election made that even better,” said Trump, who was in India this week to launch Trump Tower in Mumbai, his first project in the country in collaboration with India’s Lodha Group.

Trump has entered into a licensing pact with Lodha for Trump Tower in Mumbai, a luxury residential tower that will offer its residents indoor jacuzzi tubs and world-class concierge services.

He is yet to make an equity investment in the country.

“People are coming into India now that maybe would not have prior to the election,” Trump said. “We will make investments in India, substantial investments in India. It’s a great place to invest.”

“I don’t know that I would have made that statement three, four, five years ago. It was different.”

High inflation and interest rates have deterred home buyers in the past couple of years in India, slowing home sales and lowering profits for the country’s developers.

Home sales across the big Indian cities rose by 5 percent in the June quarter from a year ago, compared with an 11 percent rise in the same quarter two years ago, according to experts.

In a move to boost foreign investment in the sector, India this month paved the way for the market listing of real estate investment trusts, which will help debt-laden developers access cheaper sources of funding.

Trump, whose property portfolio includes projects in South Korea, Turkey and Dubai, in addition to hotels and skyscrapers in the United States, said his Trump Organisation was also in talks to invest in the hotel sector in India.

The entrepreneur and television personality did not give details of his investment plans in India.

He has another project under development in the western Indian city of Pune, which is also a licensing pact.

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