With an estimated population of 200 million, Pakistan is the world’s sixth most populous country. More than half of its population (54%) is suffering from intense deprivation of basic services such as health, education, water and sanitation.
Rural to urban migration at 3.1% is placing immense stress on the existing infrastructure of Pakistan’s cities; Karachi (24 million people) is the world’s second most populated while Lahore (11 million people) is number thirteen. The nation faces an accumulated housing deficit of 9 million units, with an addition of 700,000 every year.
Supply of housing, from both construction and mortgage solution perspectives, is significantly under the required levels to meet the needs of the housing crisis. The Construction sector constitutes 2.4% of GDP (relative to UK at 6.3%, US at 5% and India at 7%) while the Housing Finance Sector constitutes 0.7% of GDP (relative to UK at 85%, US at 78% and India at 7%). In the construction sector, the affordable housing market alone provides an untapped $20 billion dollar market opportunity driving 50 ancillary industries.
Successive governments have focused on direct intervention and implementation of affordable housing schemes, rather than taking on a role of facilitation. Resultantly, red tape, corruption and inefficiency have led to the ultimate failure of these schemes.
Due to the significant challenges that private sector developers face in Pakistan, they have focused substantially towards provision of housing for the higher-income segment for the greater margins that can justify the cost of business and transaction.
As a result, the housing sector, which in all successful countries is the backbone of the economy, remains subdued in Pakistan despite the existence of unprecedented demand.
Pakistan Freedom Movement will resolve the conflicts relating to authenticity of “title” of land and property in the country. These conflicts have strangled the growth of housing finance and are a major hurdle in creation of mortgage industry in Pakistan. A mandatory requirement of obtaining “Title Insurance” for every title transfer will not only resolve the conflicts relating to “title” in Pakistan, but will unleash the extraordinary demand of housing in the country, while also creating hundreds of thousands of jobs in the new segment of “Title Insurance”.
Our housing policy focuses on creation of an affordable housing ecosystem, establishing and maturing the key areas relating to housing. Rather than the traditional top-down approaches in affordable housing development, the starting point is empowering the common man and creating self-managed communities in order to avoid ghost towns and ghettos.