The Ghana Real Estate Developers’ Association (GREDA) is demanding that government immediately considers implementing the policy directive on using 60% local materials in the construction of all public infrastructure.
According to GREDA, enforcing the policy directive will help create employment for the youth while stabilizing the cedi as well. Currently government spends over 250 million dollars annually to import materials for state-funded construction.
A situation, the local real estate developers contend has placed them in an unfair position to compete with other estate developers elsewhere.
The Executive Secretary of the Ghana Real Estate Developers Association, Sammy Amegayibor tells Citi Business News the development is adversely impacting their operations, “Everything comes at a cost so if you look at our exchange rate for example, the cedi keeps depreciating.
This therefore tells you that importing materials from outside the country shoots our costs up,” he said. GREDA also argues that the policy if implemented will attract more investments into the real estate industry.
This it says will emanate from businesses investing in local building materials and provide innovative and indigenous means of reducing the housing deficit facing the country.
Mr. Amegayibor also bemoaned the lack of commitment to facilitate implementation of the policy. “It is actually long overdue because this issue of over reliance on foreign imports for our materials for building construction we have agreed is not the best.
Three four years back, government realized this and tried to sensitize us and prepare us for the shift from 70 foreign to 30 local materials which has been the case, to 40/60 in favour of the local market but then it has all been policy direction and seminars,” he lamented.
The Executive Secretary of GREDA also maintained that real estate developers can put up affordable properties if there is compliance with the use of local materials in the construction of public properties.
Ghana’s estimated housing deficit of over 1.7 million housing units has also been attributed to the inadequate supply of homes each year due to the high cost of producing housing units.