Govt to streamline acts, regulations on affordable housing

: The government aims to streamline the regulations and acts related to affordable housing in one-and-a-half year’s time, said National Housing Department deputy director-general Jayaselan K. Navaratnam.

“The idea to have a single entity was brought up three years ago. It is still in the pipeline but before we integrate an organisation, we believe that streamlining the regulations and the acts is more important. Because every agency, semi-government and states, they have their own policies. We have to see the balancing of requirements,” he told reporters at the sidelines of Khazanah Research Institute’s (KRI) public talk yesterday.

He said, at present, there are many acts for land, strata and housing while every state has its own regulations, and the government is studying all these now.

Jayaselan said having an integrated act and regulations means communicating with each other and working hand-in-hand but, at the moment, the various departments involved are working in silos, without understanding the challenges or issues faced by other departments.

“We have to work together. We have to facilitate for the future, make it easy. We are hoping to finish it up in one-and-a-half years,” he added.

On private developers asking to waive utility charges, Jayaselan said the government is also studying the charges imposed by the utility companies.

“At the beginning, what we were looking at was only the charges but actually what the developers are saying is that they are asked to do things. For example, if the main pipeline to a development is 37km, the developer has to build the 37km of pipes which will definitely be transferred to the purchaser because the developer won’t absorb the cost.

“There are two things here: the charges and the cost of construction. The issue here is not about the charges, it is about the cost of construction,” he said.

Jayaselan said these issues are being analysed and segmentised before any concrete statements are made by the government on where the problem is and what it will do to solve the issues.

“We cannot jump to a conclusion at this moment. Let us work with KRI, we will come up with the real issues and then we will highlight to the government and let the government make the call,” he added.

Source: The Sun Daily

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