During the first session of the CityScape conference on Tuesday, a number of major real estate investors operating in Egypt delineated obstructions to the growth of the real estate market.
The most prominent of these obstacles include an increase in the price of land, lack of vision, and absence of trained labour.
Fifty leading officials from Egypt’s real estate sector attended the session. They presented the investment opportunities and proposals for the coming period, in accordance with Egypt’s 2030 development plan.
Chairman of Egyptian Businessmen’s Association (EBA) Hussein Sabour said the main reason behind the increase in the price of land is the state’s continued monopoly over the sale of land.
The state should stop playing the role of the contractor, and be content with the monitoring and supervising the operations governing land-offering in accordance with the state’s urban schemes, Sabour said.
Managing director and board member of Tatweer Misr, Ahmed Shalaby, said the state should diversify the means by which it facilitates land offerings.
The provision of public utilities represents a financial burden imposed on the state. The state could, for example, rely on developers to provide utilities for these lands, Shalaby said.
The state could also resort to the idea of a general developer or investment funds allocated for financing utilities, he suggested.
According to managing director and board member of SODIC Maged Sherif, the state has proven itself to be incapable of successfully attracting investors and completing urban development goals.
According to Sherif, developers have submitted proposals to purchase 70 pieces of land offered in a number of cities, while no investor has submitted a proposal to buy lands offered in large urban cities. Sherif claims that this reflects the investors’ rejection of the government’s land-offering procedure and the unjustified increase in costs.
He explained that the state has not implemented the real estate investors’ demands and suggestions relating to the development of the market.
Addressing new regulations governing the real estate sector, Sherif stated that the government and developers must maintain effective communication channels to ensure that proposals submitted by the developers are met with a response. In addition, both sides should agree on a package of rules that ensure the improvement of investment mechanisms.