Negros Occidental told to develop more areas in local real estate, housing industry

BACOLOD CITY, Oct. 9 (PNA) — Negros Occidental needs to develop more areas in its real estate and housing industry as it lags behind the neighboring Iloilo, said an official of the Chamber of Real Estate and Builders’ Associations (CREBA).

Florante Ofrecio, corporate secretary of CREBA and chairman of the ongoing 24th Annual CREBA National Convention in Bacolod, said that Negros Occidental is catching up, but compared to its neighboring province in Panay, the latter is ‘a little bit faster’ in terms of industry boom.

Ofrecio cited the lack of more public infrastructure developments like roads, sea ports, and airports as a factor that attributed to the province’s slower real estate and housing industry growth.

“Seafaring should be expanded too, maybe from Bacolod to other big islands,” Ofrecio said, adding that better transportation will positively impact other major industries like tourism and trade by opening more access to a lot of properties.

However, CREBA leaders pointed out that the province’s real estate and housing industry has already improved a lot in the last 10 to 20 years.

“The chamber has done something in contribution to the province, for development follows from where we have started to where we are going,” the Ofrecio said.

Moreover, CREBA sees many assets that Negros Occidental possesses which can be utilized to further boost its real estate and housing industry.

CREBA national chairman Charlie Gorayeb said the province has a better breed of politicians, who are helping a lot in pushing for local development.

“Negrenses are very lucky, they have more decent politicians than other places in the country,” Gorayeb said.

On top of emerging service sector like the Information Communication Technology-Business Processing Outsourcing (ICT-BPO), Ofrecio cited the rich natural resources particularly beautiful sites of the province that could be connected to the neighboring provinces.

Tourism is not yet maximized, he said while emphasizing that “if we put these infrastructure developments together, definitely progress will follow.”

For his part, Eduardo Suatengco, president of CREBA-Negros Occidental Chapter, said that Iloilo being surrounded by four other provinces is an advantage over Negros Occidental.

With bigger population, there are more opportunities for real estate and housing development, he added. (PNA)