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Rethinking Institutional Reforms in the Philippine Housing Sector


  • Ballesteros, Marife M.


Why have housing reforms failed to achieve the desired improvements in housing in the Philippines? A review of trends in government housing strategies shows that while many problems in housing are linked to institutional barriers in the land and financial markets, government reforms focused on operational and program specific issues. While these reforms may be needed, they can only be effective if basic institutional issues are first addressed. The paper suggests that the efficient functioning of the land and financial markets is a necessary condition for the efficient functioning of the housing market. This requires government to undertake major reforms in land regulations and land administration infrastructure including the implementation of an effective real property tax system. On housing finance, government should re-adopt the financial reform concept developed in 1997 with assistance from the World Bank that calls for a clear separation of subsidy mechanisms from transactions in housing finance and to take initial steps to reduce subsidy that goes to high and middle-income housing markets. These reforms would also warrant reforms in the governance structure of housing delivery. Complete devolution of housing delivery functions to the local government is necessary. On the other hand, national government concerns will primarily be on providing the policy environment and housing subsidy management. These concerns may only require the creation of a corporate organization rather than a Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Suggested Citation

  • Ballesteros, Marife M., 2002. "Rethinking Institutional Reforms in the Philippine Housing Sector," Discussion Papers DP 2002-16, Philippine Institute for Development Studies.
  • Handle: RePEc:phd:dpaper:dp_2002-16

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. James Roumasset, 1989. "Decentralization and Local Public Goods: Getting the Incentives Right," Philippine Review of Economics, University of the Philippines School of Economics and Philippine Economic Society, vol. 26(1), pages 1-13, June.
    2. repec:idb:brikps:3458 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Ballesteros, Marife M., 2000. "Land Use Planning in Metro Manila and the Urban Fringe: Implications on the Land and Real Estate Market," Discussion Papers DP 2000-20, Philippine Institute for Development Studies.
    4. Manasan, Rosario G. & Mercado, Ruben G., 1998. "Metropolitan Arrangements in the Philippines: Passing Fancy or the Future Megatrend," Discussion Papers DP 1998-31, Philippine Institute for Development Studies.
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    Cited by:

    1. Eloisa T Glindro & Tientip Subhanij & Jessica Szeto & Haibin Zhu, 2008. "Determinants of house prices in nine Asia-Pacific economies," BIS Working Papers 263, Bank for International Settlements.
    2. Senate Economic Planning Office SEPO, 2013. "Breaking New Ground: Enacting a National Land Use Policy," Working Papers id:5390, eSocialSciences.
    3. Eloisa T Glindro & Tientip Subhanij & Jessica Szeto & Haibin Zhu, 2008. "Are Asia-Pacific Housing Prices Too High For Comfort?," Working Papers 2008-11, Monetary Policy Group, Bank of Thailand.
    4. Senate Economic Planning Office SEPO, 2015. "National Land Use Policy: Protecting Prime Agricultural Lands," Working Papers id:7083, eSocialSciences.

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    housing sector; institutional reforms;


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