CBN Urged to Create Funding Windows for Real Estate Players

Ugo Aliogo and Loveth ChinagoromThe Executive Director, Sabre Works, Services, Kayode Fagbadebo, has urged the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to create more funding windows to ensure that players in the real estate sector have different options of getting funds to drive investments in the sector.

Fagbadebo, who disclosed this in Lagos during the unveiling of a brand ambassador of the company noted that government has a lot of work to do especially in providing long term funding to players in the sector to finance projects.

He appealed to government to support players in the sectors in their bid to provide affordable housing for Nigerians, noting that affordable housing comes in different ways, it could come in terms of cheap rentals.

He hinted that there is a need for the government to setup an organisation to regulate rent to ensure that it is affordable in line with the actual cost of building those houses.

He further explained that as part of efforts to provide affordable housing government should give incentives to developers, people should able to able to pay conveniently in installment, and the prices should be affordable when compared to the actual cost.

Fagbadebo maintained that government needs to empower the private players in terms of projects, adding that if a private player is part of a project he should have more grants, loans, or financial support from the banks, mortgage companies to do developmental works in the project.

According to him, “The National Housing Fund (NHF) and Federal Mortgage Bank are trying. But demand is more than supply and when you have a situation like that then the distribution of this resources and allocation is poor and sometimes it gets to the wrong hands. So, the government needs to be deliberate and pay attention to that sector and ensure that those funds go to the developers that are ready to channel those funds to real projects.

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“Government is trying to like bring some sanity into the sector with the launch of the cooperative housing development programme, where the government encourages developers to organise people into cooperative is that once you are in cooperative they know that there are real people that want to leave in those properties. If we need to do something about providing affording housing, we need to be more intentional, deliberate, and face that sector and realize that apart from getting food security right for us to keep people engage, we have to properly provide good and an affordable housing, if not they will be forced to be on the street.

“If you want to finance a long-term project and support the players in that market you need to match those projects with long term funds and not short term financing. That is why commercial banks have challenge in been able to fund medium and long-term real estate project and so we need mortgage banks to be empowered, finance companies to be empowered, we need foreign investors to incentives to be able to invest in the real estate sector in Nigeria.”

“You are the experts that expose yourselves to the front-line activities of our business, hence I want to encourage you to continuously learn safety and adapt to best practices. Safety is not what we learn once; it is a continuous process.”Do not hesitate to wave me or other management team members down to share your ideas, suggestions and the challenges you are facing when carrying out your duties. Our priority is to make sure everyone coming to work in our terminal return home to their families safe and sound,” Steen said.

Also speaking, the Head of Safety, APM Terminals Apapa, Felix Ugwuagbo, said while safety remains a key priority at the terminal, all employees including senior management team members must be diligent in observing relevant safety measures at all times.An employee, Keni Ebiowei who shared his experience at the event, also emphasized the need for every worker to take responsibility for safety at the terminal.

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“My experience has taught me to believe that safety should be first as I carry out my responsibility. As a matter of fact, it should not be a management policy again; it should be individual responsibility,” Ebiowei said.The Port Manager of Lagos Port Complex, Apapa, Mrs. Olufunmilayo Olotu, commended APM Terminals Apapa for raising the bar in port operation and port safety in Nigeria.

“APM Terminals is the largest container handling company in the whole of Nigeria. We want to particularly salute you for all the efforts you have put in place to ensure that the premier port keeps ranking first in areas of cargo handling, cargo integrity and safety for all the people who are coming into the terminal. Today, we have the opportunity to see people behind the scene and I particularly appreciate what you are doing today.

“It is not every time we get to see the handlers, the drivers, hence we are using this opportunity to celebrate those who are not always visible. Thank you for keeping the premier port safe. Thank you for keeping APM Terminals safe. Thank you for ensuring that we are having safety practices that are of global best standards,” Olotu said.

The highpoint of the event was the presentation of certificates of recognition to outstanding workers by the Controller, Apapa Area Command of the Nigeria Customs Service, Comptroller Yusuf Ibrahim Malanta, while sharing a strong and valuable reminder to the team.”Remember, while you are being recognized today for your safety achievements, you are also setting the bar higher and must outperform yourself tomorrow,” Malanta said.

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