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Long Term Funding for Housing and Role of Data Dominates FSS2020 Forum

The Financial System Strategy FSS2020 Secretariat has convened the Quarter 2 2019 Mortgage Market Forum with the theme, “Integrating the Housing Ecosystem Using the Housing Market System (HMS).”

The Forum which is an assembly of Mortgage and Housing experts under the Chairpersonship of Director OFISD CBN, Mrs Tokunbo Martins, held on Wednesday at FSS2020 Secretariat, CBN Annex, NIRSAL Building, Abuja.

While speaking to Housing News, Adedeji Jones Adeshemoye, Group Head and CBN Deputy Director, Analytics, Projects and Special Examination, who is also Head of Nigeria Housing Finance Program said that the forum was essentially for stakeholders to update themselves on the FSS2020 strategy for mortgage sector and housing finance sector in Nigeria, particularly as 2020 draws near.

‘’We looked at the three thematic templates that we are working on to see where we are, and to score ourselves, and to also brief other members of the forum about where we are with issues like financial liquidity, long term funding for affordable homes in Nigeria, and other institutional arrangements that will move us closer to our targets under the financial system strategy.

‘’We meet every quarter as stakeholders to look at the task that we have been given – tasks that individual stakeholders are carrying out in the strategy implementation. We have responsibilities for different stakeholders. We come here to appraise what we have done, and then refocus on our objectives.

‘’Our goal is that by December 2020 when the FSS2020 will terminate, Nigeria mortgage ratio to GDP measures up to 20%. But we are still very far from that, and today is to rededicate ourselves to this duty.

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‘’One of our key themes is to solve the problem of not having enough liquidity in the system to finance home ownership. The savings we have are short term, while housing is a long term project. So through the refinancing that we have created NMRC for, we have a market based institution that is connected to the capital market where the long term funding is, and that has been delivered,’’ he said.

However, there are a number of things according to him that will make it work better, and chief among them is access to land which is largely under the control of the government.

To address this, the Forum have developed the ‘Modern Mortgage Foreclosure Bill’ to be passed in all states of the federation. According to him, Lagos and Kaduna have passed theirs while different states are at different levels.

‘’So this forum gives us the opportunity to device how to collaborate with the Governors’ Forum so that they can help speed up the process of passing this bill into law and solve the problem of land titling in Nigeria, so that we have uniformity across the country.

‘’Today, we have also developed 4 different market based underwriting standards that will enable Nigerians at home and abroad, and those that have been disenfranchised in one way or the other to have access to mortgages.

‘’We are also coordination with those in the supply side of housing – the real estate developers – who will now be doing demand based supply as against what used to be the case,’’ he said.

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Another achievement of the Forum according to him is the current development of an ‘Electronic Assets Registry System’ that will help everyone in information gathering.

Also speaking with Housing News, the president of Mortgage Banking Association of Nigeria (MBAN), Niyi Akinlusi stated that the mortgage market system forum is where major stakeholders meet and see how they can drive housing ownership including mortgage and the contribution of housing and mortgage GDP to the country’s economy.

‘’We are using housing to drive jobs, and reduce housing deficit, and ensure that the housing sector mortgage market takes its rightful position in relation to Nigeria’s GDP,’’ he said.

On the impact of Housing Market System (HMS) to housing, Akinlusi said that the data system provides one stop dashboard that brings all the stakeholders right from land titling to property construction to mortgage financing and refinancing together, so that the country can have a data driven economy, and so that everyone can see in a snapshot what is happening in the housing market and how it is contributing to the economy.

‘’We can use it as a tool to drive the housing and mortgage market,’’ he said.

The Financial System Strategy 2020 is the blueprint for engineering Nigeria’s evolution into an international financial centre and for developing the financial sector into a growth catalyst that will enable Nigeria’s transformation into one of the 20 largest economies in the world by 2020.

Objectives of FSS2020 includes developing a shared vision and an integrated strategy for the nation’s financial system; developing market and infrastructure strategies that will align fully with the strategic intent of the overall system; creating a performance management framework and building a partnership of all key stakeholders to implement the strategy; and establishing a harmonious and collaborative environment for the development and delivery of the strategy.

READ MORE:  Bridging Affordability Gap Will Deepen Mortgage Market- FMBN

By Ojonugwa Felix Ugboja

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