Vice President and concurrent Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC) chairman Noli ‘Kabayan’ de Castro thanked the two Houses of Congress for pushing the amendments in the Charter of the Home Development Mutual Fund (HDMF) or Pag-IBIG Fund.
The Charter amendments seek to strengthen not only the Pag-IBIG Fund but the entire housing sector as well. He noted that the draft bills approved by the two Houses of Congress would restore the tax-exempt privilege of the Fund and authorize the board to set the contribution rates of members resulting in additional funds for the benefit of Pag-IBIG members.
However, De Castro objected to the deletion of the provision in the Pag-IBIG Fund’s existing Charter stating it should “invest not less than 70% of its investible fund to housing.” “Housing is one sector with a big multiplier effect on the economy.
Every P1 million invested in housing translates to P16.6 million of economic activity in the country. At this time of the global financial crisis, we need to put our funds on industries that would stimulate the economy and create more jobs for our people,” De Castro said.
He urged Congress to restore the said provision to realize the prospective law’s objectives of providing the Filipino citizens with sufficient shelter through the mobilization of funds for shelter finance.
De Castro’s call for the restoration of the above provision is consistent with his recent announcement that the Pag-IBIG Fund is putting in at least P82 billion as part of the stimulus package being worked out by the Arroyo Administration. Of this amount, 70% or about P57.4 billion would be invested in housing. (from the newsroom of Pag-IBIG Fund website)