KUCHING: The state government, which will focus on providing housing for the Middle 40 per cent (M40) and Bottom 40 per cent (B40) groups, hopes that the federal government will cooperate with them on this matter.
Local Government and Housing Ministry Minister Datuk Dr Sim Kui Hian, during a press conference for the SHEDA Kuching Branch Second Home & Property Roadshow 2018, said that he hopes the federal government will work with the Sarawak government and vice versa, to increase low cost housing in the state.
“Typically, in this category, the Sarawak government provides the land and federal government provides the money (financing), that’s how we work together,” Sim explained.
“For the Sarawak government, while waiting for the federal government, the state government itself has provided RM60 million in kampung extension and another 141 million for all the various Rumah Spektra Permata (Spektra) programs.”
Sim stressed that the Sarawak government aims to increase affordable housing for the M40 group and low cost housing for the B40 group.
He noted on the Budget 2019 highlights like the urban renewals (RM270 million), which encompassses traditional Malay kampung areas at Darul Hana, Kampung Tabuan, Kpg Melayu and Chinese-populated areas such as the KMC flats.
“Looking ahead, there are various discussions going on that we may see how to address the affordable and low cost housing (segments).
“At the moment, for (housing) developments above a certain size, 30 per cent of this must be allocated for low cost housing.
“We are exploring and discussing, whether instead of certain sizes or percentages, we are thinking of (imposing) a levy.
“A levy on developers will allow the Sarawak government to build houses in our own state land, instead of waiting for the federal government to give us money.”
Meanwhile, Sim noted that they will also work with SHEDA to solve any key issues, be it council issues, policy issues and others.
“The whole idea is to facilitate so that it is easier for everybody from those developing to owning a house. If we can make the policy issues easier for everybody, the cost of houses will come down.”
“We will try to facilitate to bring other ministries and other federal government agencies together to solve as many issues as possible so that we can continue to bring the cost of houses down, be it low cost housing or affordable housing, for as many Sarawakians as possible.”[Source: “State hopes for federal government aid on housing ministry to focus on M40, B40” published by BorneoPost Online]