Mass Housing as an Investment Priority

Article excerpt

The Board of Investments (BOI) bared its proposed General Policies and Specific Guidelines to govern the 2013 Investment Priorities Plan (IPP) during a public hearing held last March 6.

The Chamber of Real Estate & Builders' Associations, Inc. (CREBA) commends the BOI for retaining mass housing as a priority sector in the 2013 IPP as this will trigger more economic activities to pump-prime the economy. The additional taxes generated by heightened activity in the construction and real estate industries will also lead to the increase in the fiscal coffers of the government.

More importantly, we appreciate the genuine concern for the housing sector by allowing it to fulfill its role in helping the industry address the recurring housing backlog estimated to be close to four million units, especially for packages that fall under socialized and low-cost housing.

On the specific guidelines for the availment of incentives for mass housing, particularly on developers' participation in the 20 percent balanced housing requirement under RA 7279, we recommend that the basis for computation of the compliance project for condominiums be clearly defined to be equivalent to 20 percent of the net saleable floor area of the main project as opposed to total project cost or gross area for horizontal subdivisions.

To be consistent or at par with existing guidelines on balanced housing as set forth in Resolution No. 890 issued by the Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board (HLURB) on Oct. 12, 2012 which provides the revised implementing rules and regulations governing Section 18 of Urban Development Housing Act (UDHA), we propose that compliance projects should be allowed to be located anywhere in the Philippines.

While the private sector is aware that BOI promulgates its own set of guidelines as regards BOI-registered projects, we believe that harmonizing them with other government programs on mass housing will work for the best interest not only of the homebuyer-beneficiaries but of both government and private developers as well. …