Chamber of Real Estate & Builders' Associations, Inc.

A Home for Every Filipino

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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

Intensifying effort to solve Philippine housing problems

This year, CREBA is intensifying its pursuit of solving the 5.5-million national housing backlog, which reportedly threatens to balloon to 6.5 million units by 2030 if supply and access fail to cope with the consistent rise in demand. 

Topping CREBA’s priorities is its advocacy and vision of “A Home for every Filipino.” To achieve this, CREBA has been pushing for its “Five-Point Agenda for Housing.”

This is the Chamber’s strong, determined, well-planned and carefully thought-out call to action to secure continued industry growth and ensure the delivery of dignified housing for all Filipinos.

It involves 3 major inter-related components to finally be able to solve our housing woes in a truly holistic fashion: FINANCE, LAND USE and GOVERNANCE.

The 5-point agenda being espoused by CREBA has been drafted into various bills to either introduce new measures or amend, rationalize and beef up existing laws or legislative pieces that were filed or remain pending in previous and present Congresses.

These include providing long-term and affordable funds for socialized and economic housing by amending sections of the Republic Act 7835 or the Comprehensive and Integrated Shelter Finance Act (CISFA) to establish a mechanism where millions of low-income earners can access financing exclusively for housing loan purposes. Having long-term and cheap sources of funds for housing is a key step in the government’s provision of homes for the people. A Centralized Home Financing Program (CHFP) must be established by providing additional funding for housing in the annual budget and tapping key fund sources that have already been identified by law: among them R.A. 7835 or CISFA and the amended charters of SSS, GSIS and Pag-IBIG Fund.

CREBA also aims to make homes more affordable for employees in urban areas by amending the balanced housing provisions of Republic Act 7279 or the Urban Development and Housing Act (UDHA). Developers of subdivisions are required to deliver socialized housing equivalent to 20% of either their total project area or cost. Bills have been filed in Congress to cover condominium developers under the requirement, which CREBA supported only after the quota for subdivisions was reduced to 15% while 5% became the benchmark for condominiums.

The association would like to ensure the just and equitable allocation of lands through the passage of the proposed National Land Use Act (NLUA) with an implementing mechanism that defines and balances four major categories of land uses for planning purposes: Protection Land Use; Production Land Use; Settlements and Infrastructure. Having a National Land Use Plan would ensure that the legitimate multiple uses of land will be recognized to support the varied human needs in society.

CREBA pushes for efficient LGU housing regulations by empowering the local housing boards and allowing them to take over all housing-related function for a much simpler and more efficient system.

CREBA has likewise been pushing for the creation of the full-fledged Department of Housing and Urban Development (DHUD), a measure that been lying in the legislative mills for more than 20 years. The DHUD is envisioned to be the highest national policy-making body empowered to address housing finance, production, regulation and administration in its totality. We need to ensure that the critical housing problem is accorded the attention it deserves at the highest level of government. 

Since its inception in 1973, CREBA has been leading the real estate and housing industry in bringing about a favorable policy environment for all income groups, especially the millions with no homes of their own. To this day, CREBA keeps taking the initiative for a private-sector-led socioeconomic development through an inclusive approach that matches the government’s pursuit of inclusive growth. 

The 5-point agenda hopes to unlock the billions of opportunities that increased housing production can unleash upon the national economy while helping eradicate in full the housing backlog by producing 500,000 annually in a span of 20 years.

I am greatly honored to take on the role as CREBA national president once more inspired by the vision that we have pursued relentlessly for more than forty years. Together, let us work towards attaining CREBA’s vision towards “A HOME FOR EVERY FILIPINO.”

Published in the Manila Bulletin February 2016

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