Regardless of the poor performance of the real estate industry and the drop in the property market in recent times, stakeholders have expressed optimism of a full recovery this year. The Statistician-General of the Federation and Chief Executive Officer, National Bureau of Statistics, Dr. Yemi Kale, said although the real estate industry, which contributed 6.79 percent to real Gross Domestic Product (GDP), dropped to 4.12 percent in the third quarter of 2017, with interest rates currently steady within the lower double-digits and monetary policy keeping a keen eye on inflation trends and minimising inflationary pressure, stakeholders in real estate sector should expect a recovery in 2018.
Kale and others professionals spoke about ‘The aftermath of recession: Where do we go from here’. The statistician-general, who was represented by his Technical Adviser, Lola Talabi-Oni, said the Nigerian economy, despite being susceptible to internal shocks such as insecurity, and external shocks from fluctuating global oil prices, among others, would, according to the World Bank forecast, experience modest growth in 2018. He stated, “The strong momentum of the global economy is expected to continue into 2018 with a forecasted global GDP growth of 3.9 percent by the IMF(International Monetary Fund). Here in Africa, the Sub-Saharan region is not left out of the global economic recovery as the IMF forecasts a growth of 3.3 percent and 3.9 percent within the region for 2018 and 2019, respectively. However, amidst these positive projections, some risks and challenges remain. Although analysts have predicted cyclical improvements in the near term, the consensus advocates for caution in the medium to long-term”. Kale said the dip in real estate’s contribution to the GDP, from 6.79 percent to 4.12 percent in the third quarter of 2017, came as a surprise but noted that the industry performed better during that same quarter than it did in the same period the year before.
A chartered surveyor and valuer and President, Nigerian-British Chamber of Commerce, Akin Olawore, stated that there was a need for a change of attitude towards homeownership in the country in terms of funding. He said “as Nigerians’ attitude continues to change towards house ownership, we have to seek innovative and ingenious ways of funding rather than rely on government’s spending, especially now that young people dominate the population”.
The Director of Operations, Andela, Anthonio Pinheiro, who spoke on the role of technology in solving housing challenges in the country, stated that stakeholders could deploy technology to drive decision-making process in the property market. He also added since technology has come to stay, it will continue to disrupt the market from the demand end to the supply end, making it a lot easier for consumers to participate within the property market space.