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PUTRAJAYA: The Housing and Local Government Ministry (KPKT) has chosen 25 individuals including industry players with vast and in-depth experience in the housing sector in the country to serve on its Panel of Experts (PoE).

Its minister, Datuk Seri Reezal Merican Naina Merican said the selection was a strategic initiative of the ministry to combine the knowledge, experience and expertise of various parties in helping the government implement the best housing policies and programmes for the people.

“I notice the PoE representation is quite comprehensive, with the hope and purpose that we can see a new model in the aspect of preparation and ownership of property in the country.

“The PoE members have been chosen for a period of two years based on their background in the whole (housing sector). They include economists, academics, industry players, developers, legal experts, homebuyers’ associations, bankers as well as former senior government officials,“ he told the media after presenting appointment letters to the 25 PoE members, here, today.

He said the PoE was asked to discuss the challenges and issues facing the housing sector, for example, availability, accessibility, affordability, quality and liveability (of houses).

Reezal Merican said a new approach needed to be devised to expand access to homeownership, especially to the younger generation. And their (younger generation) challenge now is to have the advance or deposit to enable them to start owning their own homes.

Besides this, he said the PoE was also tasked with finding the cause and solution to the issue of dumping of 7,729 affordable houses costing under RM300,000 that were not sold nationwide until the third quarter of 2021.

“I hope the PoE is the answer to the formation of a new model in the aspect of the overall ecosystem of home preparation and ownership to achieve the agenda outlined by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob, which is 500,000 affordable housing units under the 12th Malaysia Plan,“ he said.

Reezal Merican said the results of the initial PoE discussions would also be presented at the National Affordable Housing Council (MPMMN) meeting to be chaired by Ismail Sabri on Jan 31. The meeting will be attended by relevant government agencies, state governments and all stakeholders.

Reezal Merican chairs PoE while former Federal Territories Ministry secretary-general (sec-gen) Tan Sri Ahmad Phesal Talib is alternate chairman.

The PoE also includes Bursa Malaysia chairman Tan Sri Abdul Wahid Omar, former KPKT sec-gen Tan Sri Arpah Abdul Razak, former Bank Negara deputy governor Datuk Zamani Abdul Ghani, Khazanah Research Institute director of research Dr Suraya Ismail and Malaysian Youth Council president Jufitri Joha. — Bernama

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