RBI has issued a circular dated 11th March, 2015 wherein it has barred citizens of Hongkong and Macau from acquiring or transferring immoveable property in India other than lease which does not exceed 5 years. Already citizens of Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Afghanistan, China, Iran, Nepal and Bhutan are barred from acquiring immoveable property in India.
The gist of the RBI circular is given below:
Attention of Authorised Dealers in Foreign Exchange is invited to Regulation 7 of Foreign Exchange Management (Acquisition and Transfer of immovable property in India) Regulations, 2000 notified vide Notification No. FEMA 21/2000-RB dated 3rd May 2000 in terms of which no person being a citizen of Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Afghanistan, China, Iran, Nepal or Bhutan without prior permission of the Reserve Bank shall acquire or transfer immovable property in India, other than lease, not exceeding five years.
2. It has been observed that Macau and Hong Kong are the two Special Administrative Regions of China. As they are notified separately, it has been decided, in consultation with the Government of India, that citizens of Macau and Hong Kong will also be included in the list of countries which are prohibited to acquire/transfer immovable property in India in terms of Regulation 7 of FEMA ibid.