Ahead of the 2021 budget presentation, some stakeholders in the housing industry interacted with Citi Business News on their expectations.
The presentation is a detailed account of how the government plans to commit the country’s resources to the various sectors for the year.
President Akufo-Addo in his recent state of the nation address mentioned plans to address the country’s housing deficit.
The Ghana Real Estate Developers Association said it expects a policy on the production and use of local materials in the construction industry.
According to the Association, this will in the long term reduce the cost of building in the country while creating jobs.
Sammy Amegayibor, the Executive Director of GREDA said: “We haven’t done much in that area so we need to encourage local industries and empower local manufacturers to take up the need for our housing inputs. If we do this, we would then stop the over-reliance and the foreign exchange issues. Apart from that, on job opportunities for our boys, we can be guaranteed that they will get jobs to do.”
For the Ghana Chamber of Construction Industry, clearing of debt owed by the government will be a key item to look forward to.
The Chamber has over the period raised concerns about the delay in payment and in some cases non-payment by the government for projects its members have implemented.
Emmanuel Cherry, CEO of the Chamber also called for the capacity building of players in the sector.
“You and I are well aware that the budget as we speak now is something that we have been longing for. The reason is that we have outstanding issues that need to be captured in the budget that you know has become our anthem.”
On the other hand, the Executive Director of the Alliance for Social Equity and Public Accountability (ASEPA), Mensah Thompson believes the issue of access to affordable housing must be urgently looked at to improve the quality of life of citizens.
“The principal of the issues is the citizens’ access to quality and decent housing. As we grow as a country, as we move towards economic prosperity, one of the key things that we look forward to achieving is access to decent housing.”
Some members of the public also shared their thoughts about their expectations for the sector.
Lawrence Baanor, an IT technician, said that: “Government should regulate the prices of housing”.
Ramatu Seidu, a student added that “all outstanding government projects must be completed, at least it will improve access to housing”.
George Antwi a consultant stressed, that everyone is entitled to decent accommodation.
“It is something that has to be done.”
The budget will be presented in Parliament on Friday, March 12, 2021, and many stakeholders will be eager to hear the government’s plans to address the country’s housing challenges.