The Competition Commission of Pakistan (CCP) said the real estate sector in the country suffers from the issues of transparency, lack of mutual confidence and the protection of consumers’ confidence.
The commission suggests that a Real Estate Regulatory Authority be established in Pakistan which would play a critical role in development of the real estate sector and help grow the national economy.
In order to enact and support the functions of Real Estate Regulatory Authority, the CCP urged the government to pass a law in parliament envisaging the empowering provisions of the proposed authority as well as to support its functions.
The role of such a regulatory body will not only be to develop laws and regulations, but also to develop and employ mechanisms to effectively and transparently supervise the existing and developing areas in the real estate sector of Pakistan. It will also have the task to introduce role of technology in this sector, it added.
Pakistan’s competition watchdog has issued opinion note on issues in the real estate sector of Pakistan which will provide detailed insight into the issues raised by different stakeholders and the recommendation that the Commission has proposed for the said sector.
The Commission after receiving number of concerns relating to the Real Estate Sector decided to hold Open Hearing in three major cities of Pakistan, i.e., Islamabad, Lahore and Karachi. The open hearings were attended by various stakeholders including customers, builders and relevant associations, property agents and their associations, Provincial Governments and Development Authorities of different cities.
The CCP, in its opinion note, said it may be observed that the entire sector comprises of various transactions which include acquisition of land, its development and conversion of the properties into commercial buildings. Furthermore, to provide utilities and to develop relevant infrastructure particularly in remote areas is a challenging job.
In Pakistan, development of the real estate and providing houses to general public is divided among federal and provincial governments. Although certain regulatory authorities have been established at federal and divisional level of provinces, yet in the absence of a focused national policy and lack of regulatory frame work, there is a mushroom growth of various projects which are being launched at massive level in almost every town and city of the country. However, the existing legal framework has failed to maintain a vigilant and a system of proper check and balance in this sector, which results in the general public as well as commercial investors losing their hard earned money at the hands of felons and other factors, causing instability in the sector and further disrupting the ease of doing business, it added.
Therefore, in order to enhance the productivity of this sector, realize its full potential and protect the rights of all stakeholders, it is imperative that immediate attention is given to this sector by the government and necessary measures are undertaken to organize, formalize and regularize it, CCP recommends.
Source: Abrar Hamza