Category Archives: Housing

Swift Processing Time, Make Banks Compete

Source: PC Online

BY MATTHEW VARI

Chief executive officer of ANZ PNG, Mark Baker has told the Lands Department that it has the ability to create competition among banks in the housing market.

Mr Baker said this during a meeting between major banks and the Land Department in Port Moresby this week.

He said with effective processing times, prices come down on interest rates that aspiring home owners can benefit greatly from.

“If you can get this department to be the best government department, and we can rely on reliable transfer of land title then the banks then start competing with each other,” Mr Baker said.

“Right now because it is static and takes a long time, there is no pressure on us.”

“There are thousands of Papua New Guineans who want to own a home and you have this emerging middle class who want home ownership and they then demand reliable powers and utilities the things we all want.”

Mr Baker told the department it has the opportunity to showcase and drive change in the country, through its mandate.

MP Keen to Address Issue of Squatter Settlements

By : The National

 

Urbanisation and Housing Minister John Kaupa wants to address the issue of people squatting on State land in Moresby North-East and Port Moresby.
Kaupa over the weekend had talks with custodians of land at 7-Mile.
He has taken Urbanisation Office to task in negotiation for conversion of customary land into proper suburbs.
The planning, once in fruition, will see thousands of settlers given an opportunity to own a piece of land with a house.
Kaupa, with Urbanisation Office executive-director Max Kep and senior officers from the office, were at a site known as Faraya behind the PNG Defence Force Air Transport Squadron to meet Moiha clan leaders.
This is the second visit by Kaupa to an area which he sees as having the potential to bring in positive spin-off benefits for landowners.
Kaupa said other stakeholders like Department of Lands and Physical planning, National Capital District Commission, Eda Ranu, PNG Power Ltd and Governor Powes Parkop would be informed once formalities with landowners were established.
He said he had lived at 6-Mile Settlement for almost 25 years and knew problems of land and housing.
Kaupa said he also respected the Motu-Koitabu people as traditional landowners.
“The Moiha clan will get maximum benefit in terms of resettlement and development in their area,” he said.
“We will not repeat the mistakes of the Taurama customary land that saw land owners sell their land randomly, without proper consultation with Urbanisation and Lands Department, or service lines such as water and electricity.”

PNGIPA Set to Focus on Housing

BY MATTHEW VARI

Focus on staff for performance output will a key priority of the PNG Institute of Public Administration (PNGIPA).

Director of PNGIPA, Angori Wewerang, has said the institute will have to focus more on the needs of its staff, in terms of housing in order to get the expected levels of performance needed in ensuring the planned changes to the institution’s focus happens.

Mr Angori made the comments after the swearing-in of the new governing council members last week and made reference to announced plans to have PNGIPA transformed into a regional institution starting early next year. “One of the first things to look at is how we will get our staff reestablished and repositioned in terms of their accommodations,” Mr Wewerang said.

He said while accommodation owned by the institute is adequate for the current needs of the teaching and general staff, the need to renovate and the upkeep was a concern that will be addressed.

“These are all buildings that were built in the 1960s and 70s so we are trying to maintain, revive that, and look at how best we relocate our staff so that is going to be one of the first discussions the council will have to make.

“That is important for us and we expect them to perform, they don’t often come and perform the way they are expected to, and the first thing we are looking at is at how we can place our staff from the teaching to general staff,” Mr Wewerang said.

Sorting out the issue will then allow the council to develop programs in the provincial and sub-national levels of government.

“That is going to be the first thing to see the shift of delivery from here to delivery of the provincial and local level government in areas in addition to that establishment of the Pacific Institution of Leadership and Governance,” Mr Wewerang said.

Papua New Guinea’s Housing Dilemma

By : Phylma Timea ( NRI)

Owning a family home is a dream for many Papua New Guineans. Due to recent economic developments such as the PNG Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) Project, affordable accommodation has become an important issue, especially in the National Capital District (NCD).

Currently, there is an imbalance in the real estate market, where demand for affordable housing is not being met by supply. As a result, the cost of owning a home has steadily increased. This makes it harder for the typical Papua New Guinea working population to buy or own a house. It has also caused rental accommodation rates to increase.

recent study by the PNG National Research Institute has highlighted various obstacles faced by private property developers that must be addressed by the appropriate government agencies to ensure that real estate is developed and sold at an affordable price to the average Papua New Guinean.

Obstacles highlighted in the study include:

  • Provision of trunk infrastructure such as clean portable-piped borne water, sewerage, good road network and electric power is being done by the private property developer although it is the responsibility of the state. These additional costs contribute to the high selling price of the houses being built by private property developers.
  • Capacity constraints. There is a shortage of skilled labour in the house construction industry in PNG. People that are available require more training, which contributes to the cost of building a house. Furthermore, the country lacks industries that could support large scale housing projects.
  • Unsupportive policy environment. The current PNG housing policy is out-dated and does not reflect realities in the country. In addition, the policy does not have enough legislation for regulating the housing industry in PNG.
  • High cost of building materials, trunk infrastructure and land. Locally produced materials are often more expensive than imported materials. This also adds to the cost of production.

The key recommendation from the study was an arrangement called the Public-private partnership (PPP) between the public and private sector. In this arrangement, the private sector participates in various stages of the housing project such as designing and building the house whilst the public sector focuses on the development of housing policies and provision of trunk infrastructure and services.

Such a partnership between the two sectors would greatly decrease real estate prices making many Papua New Guineans dream of owning a house come true.

Hanuabada To Rebuild from the Ashes

BY GORETHY KENNETH

HanuaBada village appeal leaders Dadi Toka Jr and Lohia Samuel said yesterday there will not be any resettlement, but rebuilding of the 18 houses that burnt down a week ago.

The 18 families affected include Sisia Nou, Vagi Daera, Doura Lou, Agi Reva, Sale Rea, Dia Dikana, Seri Mauri, Edea Loa, Morea Gau, Arua Ovia, Dego Ao, Naomi Rarua, Rarua Taunao, Rarua Tau, Goada Heni, Bele Gau, Bele Heni, Louisa Kariko. There were 18 homes destroyed by fire, 24 homes partially destroyed, 250 individuals homeless and 80 families affected.

Mr Toka and Mr Lohia said yesterday they thanked Prime Minister Peter O’Neill for giving K250,000 last week, but added that the victims would not be resettled as suggested in media reports.

“At no time was there any mention or discussion of resettlement or relocation when we met with Prime Minister Peter O’Neill,” Mr Toka said.

“But on a positive note, the appeal has raised nearly K500,000 within a week. Individuals, communities, corporate sector and Government Departments have heard our cries for help and hence reached out to assist the people of Hanuabada Village,” he said.

“There is still a lot more work to be done. We are now in the rebuilding phase of the disaster.

“The families affected by the fire and the coordination committee will meet today to discuss this week’s plans on clearing the disaster site and construction stages,” he said.

Meanwhile Prime Minister’s office also released a media statement last yesterday noting the misreporting done this week on the matter.

A news release last Friday, noted the Prime Minister’s interest in the process of restoring residents affected by the recent Hanuabada fires to their homes following reconstruction.

It is important to be clear, resettlement planning relates only to resettling people back into their homes, on their land, once re-construction is complete.

As was stated by the Prime Minister, “the victims must be supported and their lives returned to normal”.

“This restoration will go even further to improve services, including water and sanitation, so that lives are improved and public safety is enhanced,” the Prime Minister said.

 

300 Housing Titles Giveaway

By : Post Courier

 

The Government will allocate the first 300 titles to ordinary Papua New Guineans in the first 100 days, Treasury Minister Charles Abel announced last Friday.

Mr Abel will also support the Independent Consumer and Competition Commission to do a review on whether they can bring rental rates under some sort of control and more affordable for ordinary people.

He said 300 out of 1762 allotments will be released to Bank South Pacific for mortgage loans within the 100 days through a raffle.

He said his office has began response and on site observations over the last three weeks and are continuing.

“We already have officers on the ground that are monitoring the situation,” Mr Masange said.

He said his office at the moment is responding by distributing non food items to the communities to help them relocate and resettle temporarily until the increased water levels subside. “We will be issuing food items when our assessments determine that there is an acute need for food items,” he said.

He said negotiations with other humanitarian organizations in the province were progressing and some assistance would be sought from these organizations when the circumstance arises. Mr Masange is also calling onto the Department of Works and PNG Power Limited to monitor culverts and power poles along the highway to ensure it is business as usual despite the weather.

He said many times road users face problems because of the negligence of authorities on the ground.

He said it was important for the DoW to closely monitor the culverts along the highways that link the province so that they make sure there is no build up of debris.

“When you have debris piling up at one end of the culvert, the water will look for ways to escape and in doing so will dig up the area surrounding the foundation of the bridge and that is dangerous,” Mr Masange said.

He added fixing the culverts took long periods of time and were also expensive.

“We can avoid these spending by simply ensuring that the culverts are cleared on both ends so that excess water can pass through without having to disrupt any other activity,” he said.

Bridges and other small waterways are rising and bringing debris of all kinds onto the road posing a threat to road users especially PMVs travelling up the Markham highway and also commercial vehicles running errands between Lae, Nadzab, Erap and further up.

Mr Masange said it was also important for PNG Power lines men to regularly monitor the power poles that run the highways.

“We cannot afford to have live wires falling onto the highways during this time because then the live wire will be in direct contact with water,” Mr Masange said.

Moresby North East MP to Prioritise Settlement Development

By: Post Courier

Moresby Northeast electorate is set to modernise, under the new leadership of member elect John Kaupa.

The Chimbu man and new Minister for Housing and Urbanisation assured his voters, yesterday after hosting a party to thank his supporters in his Manuti residence outside six mile that all outstanding issues to do with housing around the city would be addressed.

The Metropolitan district that is comprising of a majority of settlers from around Papua New Guinea voted Mr Kaupa to oust PNC sitting member Labi Amaiu. Mr Kaupa tried to get into parliament in three previous elections, but only became successful in this year’s general election.

“I would like to thank you all my supporters, friends and family for your generous support in materials, in kind or even voting me over the years in my attempt to contest every election,” he said.

“I have one aim and that is to serve you in improving our standard of living, so our kids can be educated in better Schools, you have better access to Health facilities, we have better policing to police our city, and everyone irrespective of which gender and  nationality, region or ethnic group you come from, will pursue the happiness of life  to live in harmony as one people and one family  in our city as God intends.”

“In this Election God has been gracious to us by giving us victory. And my win is for every one of you who have supported me. Whether you vote me or another candidate, we will work together to ensure our electorate improves,” said Kaupa.

Mr Kaupa said the North East electorate comprises of a majority of population who are living in the settlement and his tenure in office will see prioritising of projects and services to modernise its residence.

“We are all living in Port Moresby and it has become our home, I will be  working in partnership with the Governor of NCD so proper land title is given to the settlers in consultation with the land owners and Lands Department, so your residence is converted to a proper suburb for government services to flow.” He assured his supporters.

The new member also thanks the Prime Minister Peter O’Neill for giving him a Ministry and said that he will ensure the housing department is properly audited and brings back to its reputable status.

“ There will be no more eviction and illegal sales of the National Housing, those who have lived in the NHC property for many years will be given the opportunity to purchase the property on a reasonable price but if they cannot afford some alternatives will be available,” he said.

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