The Pakistan Association of Large Steel Producers rejected the Association of Builders & Developers’ accusation that a recent increase in prices of reinforcing bars was a conspiracy against the Naya Pakistan Housing Scheme.
In a statement, the steel producers’ association insisted that a rise in steel bar prices wasn’t a real impediment to the housing project.
“However, the biggest barrier to affordable housing is the real estate builders and developers themselves,” the statement said.
The Pakistan Association of Large Steel Producers (PALSP) insisted that the government should regulate developers who were using a surge in real estate prices to chase higher margins.
“With some of the highest net profits and returns on equity margins across industries, the need of the hour is the government regulations to fix the pricing of various categories of real estate projects whether it be residential or commercial development,” the PALSP said.
The association added that the government should monitor income tax submissions of major players in the real estate development sector to ensure transparency.
Last week, the Association of Builders and Developers of Pakistan (ABAD) released a statement criticizing a sharp spike in the prices of steel rebars over the past ten months.
ABAD Chairman, Fayyaz Ilyas, said that the price of steel bars was currently at Rs. 178,500 per tonne, up from Rs. 110,000 per tonne in November last year.
He accused manufacturers of artificially raising prices to make additional profits out of the Naya Pakistan Housing Scheme.
“In this situation, the federal government will not be able to fulfill its promise of constructing five million low-cost houses,” the ABAD statement said.
The Naya Pakistan Housing Scheme is an affordable housing project initiated by Prime Minister Imran Khan aimed at providing low-cost subsidized homes for low and middle-income earners.
The project has pledged to build a total of 5 million affordable homes and will require major input from contractors in the construction industry and related sectors.