THE country’s massive housing backlog continues to deprive Filipinos of affordable and decent dwellings. The latest data by the University of Asia and the Pacific showed that the Philippines would need 12.3 million housing units by 2030. Of these 12.3 million units, 1.45 million need housing subsidies and 1.58 million more are for socialized housing from 2012-2030, according to the records of the Subdivision and Housing Developers Association Inc. (SHDA).
The national government has been doing its part to improve housing policies and subsidy management, part of which is tapping the private sector.
The Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DHSUD), the country’s central housing authority, requires developers to contribute to socialized housing programs where each developer is entitled to their own compliance mode.
“Times are simply becoming more difficult for many Filipinos, and we are supporting this program since Federal Land can be of help,” said Federal Land President Thomas Mirasol. “The government’s action agenda for housing has never been more urgent than now, and we’ve taken it upon ourselves to advance our portion of socialized housing.”
For Federal Land, the updated policy, which requires 15 percent horizontal development and 5 percent vertical project contribution opened more opportunities for them to upgrade their participation.
The company now complies through Participation through Investment or the Building a Legacy for the Advancement and Integrity (BALAI) program. BALAI has the highest credit among all compliance modes as it is, in fact, a non-recoverable nonprofit investment equivalent to 5 percent of the total costs of the main project. Under this initiative, Federal Land is responsible for land development to deliver roads, drainage, power, and water lines.
Federal Land has also advanced its escrow by at least a year for more efficient compliance, ahead of the common industry practice. This allows Federal Land to be more expedient in processing the licenses needed for soon-to-be launched social housing projects with DHSUD and chosen LGU partners.
Moreover, as most of the projects under its socialized housing program are slated outside Metro Manila—such as Mati in Davao Oriental, Monkayo in Davao de Oro, and San Miguel, Bulacan among others, Federal Land sees its contribution complementing the government’s sustained efforts to link cities through the “Build Build Build” (BBB) program. In the middle of the still undefeated pandemic and the erratic implementation of the community lockdowns, big-ticket projects under BBB continue, and are considered to fuel the country’s economic recovery beyond the health crisis. With the resumption and progress of Federal Land’s developments, it hopes to further contribute to the national goal of distributing economic growth and eventually decongesting the capital.
“We extend our support to the vulnerable segments of our population because it is in our nature as a developer to nurture a healthy and well-balanced community. We also believe that it should be a shared goal for the public and private sectors to build a more inclusive and sustainable future for Filipinos. For us in real estate, that means secure shelter and reliable infrastructure,” Mirasol concluded.
Article and Photo originally posted by Business Mirror last November 24, 2020.