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From the Chairman

Charlie A.V. Gorayeb

Charlie A.V. Gorayeb

Chairman of the Board, CREBA Chairman, CREBA Advocacy & Legislative Affairs Committee Honorary Consul General, Republic of Djibouti


Global real estate has come of age. Solutions to market concerns have become widely accessible through global networks that work swiftly across vast oceans. Philippine real estate industry players recognize the vital importance of investment information, communication and linkages in bringing solutions that work both locally and internationally. Our global endeavors for the country’s real estate industry take a monumental turn with the strong presence of the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) in the Philippines. Real estate professionals need a trusted global ally – which NAR embodies – to reinforce our steps in conducting our business in a world without borders.

In November 2010, I had the pleasure of meeting NAR President for 2011 Ronald Phipps during the Annual REALTORS® Convention and Expo in New Orleans, where the idea of being official organization partner was first offered to CREBA. Having been in my eight-year hiatus within semi-retirement, I had to honestly and humbly decline, unsure about whether or not the incumbent CREBA leadership would be willing to accept, or at the very least interested. As the country’s largest umbrella organization of stakeholders from the allied industries of housing, construction, and real estate development, I was even in doubt CREBA was the right partner given NAR’s membership nature and dominant composition.

As NAR enters a new age after a century in existence, however, it redefined its position to include all kinds of professionals engaged in all aspects of the real estate business and profession. This gradual shift in practice, already prevalent in Brazil, Japan and other countries, galvanized CREBA’s role as the exclusive steward of the NAR name and programming, with the unique authority to protect the use of the REALTOR® trademark and brand name in the Philippines.

In the presence of His Excellency Vice-President and housing czar Jejomar C. Binay in January 27 of this year, the Chamber of Real Estate & Builders’ Associations, Inc. (CREBA) entered into a long-term bilateral accord with the NAR – the “voice for global real estate” representing over 1.3 million members in the United States as well as in 60 countries across the globe – conferring upon CREBA the distinction as the only NAR Cooperating Association in the Philippines.

To implement our side of the partnership, CREBA created the CREBA-NAR Global Real Estate Council led by Evangeline A. Via as Chairman, Domingo D. de Vera as Vice-chairman, with Dr. Mary Gaw So, Josephine A. Cortez, Daniel R. dela Cruz, Avelina P. Acuna and Robert Marie C. Sy as members. Julius G. Topacio serves as Vice-President for Global Real Estate Alliances.

Barely three months after the official launching of the membership campaign last March 31, International REALTOR® Membership (IRM) and NAR affiliation in the country rose to more than 350, heralding Philippine membership as the biggest in Asia. CREBA led a series of oath taking rites in Manila, Cebu and Cagayan de Oro City in the presence of the NAR President’s Liaison to the Philippines, Asuncion “Shonee” Henry.

NAR-certified IRMs enjoy exclusive use of the distinctive and globally recognized REALTOR® trademark and logo, access to the largest online real estate library in the world, a searchable international brokers directory and other tools proven to leverage real estate professionals in international business, among other membership benefits.

The CREBA-NAR alliance was timely as the local property sector enjoys its most dynamic cycle in recent history. Property stakeholders therefore must be committed to drive the land and housing development as a top catalyst for economic and social progress. In the light of government’s commitment to a technically competent, responsible and respected corps of licensed real estate brokers, appraisers, consultants and salespersons through R. A. 9646 or the Real Estate Service Act of 2009, the NAR-CREBA cooperation exists to promote strict adherence to a Code of Ethics that will uplift the standards of practitioners in the Philippines and make them globally competitive and at par with their counterparts in the international real estate community.

Real estate practitioners play a vital role in the social, political, economic development and progress of their respective countries. The NAR-CREBA pact strongly conveys absolute and esteemed commitment to make Philippine practitioners globally competitive in the international real estate community.

Published in the Manila Bulletin July 2011

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