KMC Savills Managing Director Michael
McCullough was one of the esteemed panelists in the recently
concluded Pinnacle Holding Company's 1st Global Forum held in
Sofitel Manila. McCullough is tasked to share the
perspective of the Real Estate sector when it comes to the flagship
project of the Department of Public Works and Highways called the
"Build, Build, Build" program.
McCullough assured the attendees that the real estate sector is in its
"sweet spot" for the next 5 to 10 years since the
long-term prospects for the country are still very bright. He
also discussed the
effects of the new
tax reform and how it may bring more money to the retail
sector. As a result, KMC Savills expects that a lot more money will
be thrown into residential projects due to the increased spending
capacity of the public.
According to him, the demand for
office spaces is still being driven by the
Business Process Outsourcing sector. McCullough
admitted that there were "freezes" encountered last year but the
BPO sector is once again back on its normal footing.
KMC Savills also shared that the
occupancy of office spaces outside Metro Manila is also picking up.
The real estate sector now looks at Clark,
Cebu, Iloilo, Bacolod, and
Davao to contribute significantly to the office supply. This is
also in line with the government's vision of decentralizing the
development outside Metro Manila.
When asked about the infrastructure
that will most likely benefit the real estate sector, McCullough
expressed high hopes for the Metro Manila Subway project. He
discussed how there are a lot of speculations about the location of
the subway stations. He stated that key business districts such as
Bonifacio Global City, and
Ortigas should be prioritized in this project.
Also, in the same panel, Budget
Secretary Benjamin Diokno discussed their new approach when it comes to the current and
future infrastructure projects. They are implementing the "turnkey
basis" wherein a project needs to be completed first before the
issuance of a payment. To be more specific, Diokno also cited a "secret conversation" with
President Rodrigo Duterte about the Clark International Airport
being implemented under the said basis. He explained further, "we will pay
them after it's done, 2 years from now. This will speed up the
Other panelists are First Metro
Investment Chairman Francisco Sebastian, ING Philippines Country
Manager Hans Sicat, NEDA Deputy Director General
Rolando Tungpalan, Philippine Stock Exchange
Ramon Monzon, and JICA Chief
Representative Susumo Ito also discussed
funding, foreign investment,
private-public partnerships and traffic management in the country.
Beyond infrastructure, they also touched on the topic of improving
the broadband connectivity in the Philippines as they anticipate
the entry of a foreign telecommunications company.