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According to a report by Anarock,  31 new shopping malls are expected to be operational by the end of next year on the back of a strong revival in the retail sector.

A total of 15 new malls will enter the market spread across 12 cities this year and in 2023, another 16 new malls will come up.

Property consultant Anarock said in terms of area, fresh retail space in shopping malls is expected to rise 76 percent this year on an annual basis. In 2021, 5.76 million square feet of new retail real estate supply had entered the country.

"Retail real estate is staging a strong comeback, with nearly 10.15 million square feet of new mall supply set to hit Tier 1, 2, and 3 cities in 2022, and another 7.25 million square feet in 2023," Anarock said in a statement.

With four new malls built this year, Chennai will get the highest supply of malls spread over an area of 2.55 million square feet. Other Tier 1 cities with new mall supply include Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Mumbai, Pune, and Ghaziabad in NCR spanning 5.10 million square feet area.

With a total area of about 2.50 million square feet tier, 2 and 3 cities include Baroda, Budaun, Indore, Nagpur, and Udaipur.

"COVID-19 severely impacted the general economy - and retail in particular - in 2020. Brick-and-mortar retail stores in malls and high streets were hit hard, and a quick recovery seemed improbable," Pankaj Renjhen, COO and Joint MD of Anarock Retail said.

After the disruption caused by the COVID pandemic, mall operators had to reshuffle their business plans and strategies to run their businesses.

"However, the massive nationwide vaccination drive resulted in a much milder third wave at the beginning of 2022 - and the withdrawal of restrictions allowed economic activities to restart. This has fuelled new growth in the retail sector," Renjhen said.

As consumers return to more normal shopping, Anarock said that India's retail real estate market is responding to significantly improved footfalls.

Malls are again witnessing high occupancy levels, and the requirement for more organized retail space is pronounced.

Going by the high leasing volumes by occupiers across categories and the momentum witnessed in the Tier II & III cities, mall developers are finishing their projects and rapidly adding new inventory.

16 new malls will hit the market across Bengaluru, Chennai, Gurugram, Hyderabad, Mumbai, Pune, Bhopal, Cuttack, Jamshedpur, Kochi, Lucknow, and Vizag in 2023.

With the inputs from PTI

 

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