1.7M jobs annually seen under Marcos’ housing program

The Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DHSUD) sees an additional 1.7 million jobs generated annually under the government’s six-year housing program for informal settler families (ISF).

DHSUD Secretary Jose Acuzar said the Pambansang Pabahay para sa Pilipino: Zero ISF 2028 Program will increase cash flow in the housing sector market as well as provide employment to many jobless Filipinos.

“It is projected to have direct and indirect jobs in the sector especially in areas where mid-rise to high-rise units will be built,” Acuzar said.

The agency projected about 1.7 million jobs would be created annually when the housing program goes full blast with the construction of housing units.

A study showed that at least eight workers are necessary in the construction of a housing unit within a certain period. The Pambansang Pabahay para sa Pilipino:Zero ISF 2028 Program is aiming to build one million units per year in the next six years.

Post-pandemic recovery

The significant number of jobs is seen to help the administration’s post-pandemic recovery efforts, according to the DHSUD.

As of August 2022, the Philippine Statistics Authority reported 2.68 million unemployed Filipinos aged 15 to 64 years old.

In June 2022, President Marcos’ economic team, led by Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno, presented the eight-point socioeconomic agenda in the near and medium-term which includes creation of more jobs by promoting investments.

Under the program, the DHSUD seeks P36 billion interest support per year and calls for the active involvement of both government and commercial banks in the financing side.

“With this program, we will also be tapping the economic pump-priming potential of the housing sector,” Acuzar said.

So far, DHSUD has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Development Bank of the Philippines and has engaged other government financial institutions and even private banks.

DHSUD Secretary Jose Rizalino L. Acuzar

Some GFIs have expressed readiness to support the Marcos administration’s priority housing program as several local government units already broke ground to roll out their respective housing projects.

Another housing project

Just recently, the DHSUD led the groundbreaking ceremony for a new housing project in Barangay Nangka in Marikina City, the sixth of such ceremonies in merely two weeks under Marcos’ housing program.

The project forms part of the 100 Days accomplishments of the Marcos administration in the housing sector.

Acuzar said addressing the country’s housing need, pegged at 6.5 million, is “definitely possible” under this national housing program, a brainchild of the President.

Under this endeavor, the DHSUD intends to build and dispense one million housing units every year or six million housing units within the six-year term of President Marcos.

“This will not be easy, but definitely possible, as we are already making significant strides in making this happen. This MoU signing and groundbreaking ceremony for a land development and housing project is a concrete manifestation of that,” the housing czar said during a ceremony in early October which was preceded by the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Marikina Mayor Marcelino Teodoro.

From the launch of the Pambansang Pabahay para sa Pilipino Program on September 22, the DHSUD has already signed MoUs and broken ground in Mariveles Town in Bataan and in the cities of Quezon, Bacolod, Roxas and Iloilo.

“I am deeply honored and humbled to be [the President’s] emissary in sending this good news to all of you here in Marikina City, and in the country as a whole – unti-unti na pong matutupad ang pangarap ng bawat pamilyang Pilipino na nagnanais magkaroon ng sariling bahay. Sa pamamagitan po ng Pambansang Pabahay para sa Pilipino Program, sisikapin natin na makapagpatayo ng isang milyong bahay kada taon,” Acuzar said.

He also reiterated the eagerness of the DHSUD in fast-tracking the implementation of the housing program, as evidenced by the new strategies on housing production and finance being devised by the agency to ensure that stakeholders accordingly do their duties while mutually gaining benefits from establishing housing projects.

The DHSUD is currently engaging with other local government units across the country to further clinch MoUs for more housing projects, effectively fulfilling its mandate of providing Filipinos with decent, sustainable and affordable homes they can call their own.