ECCP: No need to relocate urban poor outside NCR
A group of European businessmen is urging the new administration to use some of its existing properties within Metro Manila as potential locations for its socialized housing projects in order to address the growing housing backlog.
“Socialized housing solutions should be possible without moving them out of the city considering that Metro Manila is still where they are finding their jobs or livelihood. The government can look at some of the properties it owns and transform them into urban medium-rise social housing projects,” European Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines (ECCP) senior advocacy adviser Henry V. Schumacher said.
The ECCP is proposing solutions to the government as part of a roadmap the latter is crafting to identify the extent of the housing problem in aging Metro Manila.
“There is a clear need for affordable housing especially for the urban poor. All the stakeholders should ensure that the livelihood of this marginalized sector is not displaced when they are offered socialized housing options,” Schumacher added.
Once an area has been identified, construction companies could come in and provide adequate support as part of their corporate social responsibility, he added. He said these companies have access to innovative and sustainable materials, which can improve and promote more livable socialized houses.
Schumacher said the ECCP sees vertical developments within Metro Manila and its outlying areas possible without the need for huge land areas.
He added relocation need not be in the provinces, noting the lands there were primarily intended for agriculture.
Citing government data, ECCP said there was a need to construct 5.5 million units of socialized housing for the urban poor. This is on top of the government’s 1.4 million housing backlog.
Government agencies such as the National Housing Authority (NHA), the Social Housing Finance Corp. and the Home Development Mutual Fund (Pag-IBIG) have given housing assistance to 894,569 families valued at P300 billion from 2010 to 2015.
The Home Guaranty Corp., a government-owned and -controlled corporation also reported P222 billion worth of housing loans have been extended by commercial banks, rural banks, and other financing companies for the construction of about 127,500 housing units.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.