SINGAPORE — In the debate on the HDB motions in Parliament on Monday (Feb 6), Workers’ Party MP Louis Chua underlined the serious demand-supply imbalance in Singapore’s housing market at present, asking that the Government address the shortfall by boosting the supply of housing.
“‘Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.’ This saying is usually attributed to Albert Einstein, but one might argue also appears to be the current approach to the multitude of housing-related issues we are seeing in Singapore today,” the Sengkang GRC Member of Parliament said.
Noting that it has been announced that if necessary, HDB is prepared to launch up to 100,000 flats in total from 2021 to 2025, Mr Chua said this is not enough.
“I say that there is a clear need today for not just 100,000 flats in total from 2021 to 2025 but certainly more, and it is clearly necessary to make adjustments urgently.
The objective of my speech today is thus a very simple one: for the Government to urgently execute on the policy to boost the supply of housing to address the shortfall in the market today.”
Mr Chua added that application rates for BTO (Built to Order) flats have reached new heights in the last ten years, increasing from 2.8 times in 2012 to 5.6 times in 2021.
He then said, “Despite the ramp-up in supply with 35 per cent more units last year, overall application rates have remained stubbornly high at 5.1 times in 2022, compared with an average of just over three times in the past decade, suggesting that the level of demand-supply imbalance remains a critical concern.”
Therefore, with such a broad-based demand for flats, the Government should be more proactive in addressing this demand, instead of curbing it, the MP argued.
Mr Chua ended his speech by saying that he is “comforted by PM Lee’s comments during the National Day Rally earlier this year, where he shared that and I quote, ‘We have done our studies and planning. We will have enough space for future generations. Our problem is not finding the space to build enough flats, nor keeping homes affordable for Singaporeans. We know how to do that.’
I thus sincerely hope the Government can take urgent and decisive steps to increase the availability of public housing and ensure that the housing needs of all Singaporeans are met.”
Mr Chua’s speech may be viewed in full here. /TISG
WP’s Louis Chua: Inflation a problem for many, not only low-income Singaporeans
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