To expand the housing development within BARMM, the Ministry of Human Settlements and Development (MHSD), in collaboration with the Bangsamoro Board of Investment (BBOI), held the Regional Investment Forum on Housing Industry on July 8, 2021 at the Bajau Hall, Office of the Chief Minister Building, Bangsamoro Government Center, Cotabato City.

The forum was the offshoot of the previously conducted Forum on Human Settlements Management and Transitional Justice. Its objective was to showcase the potential of housing production in BARMM and the incentives offered by the region for the investors in housing industry.

It was attended by different BARMM ministries, private real estate developers, and other related agencies such as Pag-IBIG Fund and National Housing Authority.

Director General Esmael W. Ebrahim welcomed the participants to the forum and delivered the opening message on behalf of Minister Hamid Aminoddin D. Barra.

He gave the latest housing statistics in BARMM, where only 16% of the total household population have their own homes, accordingly. Thus, the BARMM Government plans to address this disparity through the mandates of the MHSD on housing management and urban development.

“With the team efforts, to be provided by all sectors, both public and private, the issue of housing disparity shall be addressed and the people in the region shall enjoy the sense of pride as warden and custodian of their own shelter, own home and own dwelling place”, Director General Ebrahim added aside from advocating the #MyHomeMyDream.

Chief Minister Ahod Balawag Ebrahim expressed his support to the ministry and its efforts. “Every Bangsamoro family has the right to live in dignity in the comfort of one’s own home, regardless of economic status”, Chief Minister Ebrahim emphasized.

Planning on land development and housing production is also accentuated in the forum. In relation to this, Engr. Al-Kashmir Ko of the Bangsamoro Planning and Development Authority (BPDA) presented the Bangsamoro Development Plan to further understand the priorities of the region, especially in housing.

MHSD’s regulatory functions was then discussed by the ministry’s Regulatory Section Head, Yasser S. Mama. He presented housing regulation and licensing, with emphasis on the requirements and processing of license application so with different policies and guidelines on economic and socialized housing were also presented.

To explore more on payment schemes for housing, Marketing Specialist Ronald G. Lee of the Pag-IBIG Fund Cotabato Branch, discussed the Membership and how to avail of Housing Loans through the agency. He also highlighted some requirements for housing loans, wherein BARMM Employees are eligible to apply.

One of the esteemed Real Estate Developer in Davao, AEON Luxe Properties Inc., presented its accomplished projects and signified their intent to invest in the BARMM. Its Project Development Officer Jester Hospital shared their strong willingness to put up an AEON-Brand project in the region.

Investment Incentives was then discussed by Atty. Ishak V. Mastura, Chairperson of BBOI. He gave emphasis on the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprise (CREATE) under the R.A. 11534, as the major law to lower the corporate taxes.

Atty. Ishak related this presentation to the business corporation’s advantage on the impact of saving businesses and making them more competitive, thus, increasing more investments especially in the region.

One of the highlights of the forum was the ceremonial signing of Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) between MHSD and BBOI for continued collaboration.

In the MOA, both parties are committed in the development and promotion of the housing industry particularly in attracting private sector investors to the BARMM. It was signed by Chairperson Atty. Mastura and Director General Ebrahim.

To conclude the forum, Chief Admin Officer Nomaire M. Madid of the MHSD expressed his gratitude to the participants and the resource persons for their active participation. He also emphasized further forums and dialogues to be conducted as one of the methods in addressing the housing disparity within the BARMM.