The National, Wednesday 28th December 2011
By SHIRLYN BELDEN
THE increasing demand for housing and land in urban Papua New Guinea is the result of the escalating rural-urban drift, a researcher at the National Research Institute said.
Vincent Pyati speaking on the population boom in urban PNG said the rural-urban drift had contributed to the failure to keep up with the demand for housing and land.
According to the United Nations, unless the government addressed the population growth rate, taxpayers will feel the rise in costs of accessing land and houses in towns and cities.
Pyati said it had caused the rise in informal developments – buildings in the National Capital District that are not compliant with building board and land authorities requirements.
“Many public servants and workers in the private sector cannot afford a decent house or a car loan and contemplate on living through to the next day.
“They live in squatter settlements,” he said.
Pyati gave the example of a senior public servant in the 8-Mile settlement outside Port Moresby who was one of many who could not access affordable housing.
He said there were taxpayers like the senior public servant who could not afford good housing and land in Port Moresby and other urban areas.
He said scarcity of land was also causing high housing prices for ordinary people.
“The uncoordinated policies and systems of the land release system are contributing to the shortages of affordable land resulting in high land and housing costs.”