Current land administrative structure provided in the Land Use Act has stifled equity
Both Federal Government and the National Assembly have been urged to ensure speedy passage of housing and land related bills in order to unlock $900 billion dead capital in residential real estate and agriculture land.
According to built environment professionals, without the passage of the bill into law, there is no way Nigerians can unlock dead capital on land.
Other things that need to be put in place, they said, included properly implemented land administration, amendment of the Land Use Act, increased capacity and proper institution of land valuation services, installation of land information system and review the land allocation and development approval processes for ease of transaction.
Report from PWC had it that Nigeria “holds as much as $900 billion worth of dead capital in residential real estate and agricultural land.”
According to the report, it is estimated that the high value real estate market segment holds between $230 billion and $750 billion of value, while the middle market carries between $60 billion and $170 billion in value.
PWC pointed out that there were many forms of dead capital but the report only focused on real estate. It noted that approximately 95 per cent of household dwellings in Nigeria had no title or a contestable title.
The PWC analysts said that conversion of dead capital to live capital through structural reforms would help convert most of the capital in the informal economy of Nigeria, which is currently valued at 65 per cent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) into the formal economy.
y creating trust in the system, they stated that increased participation would bring about the capital conversion in the economic class through fiscal receipts into the formal economy. “It would also increase capital for infrastructure in the sector and increase economic activity,” the PWC report said.
Speaking with New Telegraph, a former Managing Director, Lagos Development and Property Corporation, Mr. Antonio John-Bede, said: “The basic things is the laws in the National Assembly which have not been passed.”
He stated that some people were sitting on one billion worth of assets, pointing out that those assets could be securitised and use for some bigger things. “With the kind of house that worths N30million, you can use it to secure N20milion loan. You can do so many things, you can use it to build infrastructure.
By unlocking dead capital in land, you can assess N600 billion to expand the economy,” he said.
The Managing Director, Lordfield Limited, Mr. Ropo Olajugba, said that Nigeria as a country only had only about 4-5 per cent of the entire land mass registered, “which has become a stumbling block for the proper utilisation of the land and investment.”
Properly implemented land administration system, according to him, has the potential to truly change Nigeria’s economy now.
He said: “Land administration system is to ensure that the land title reg- istration process in Nigeria is expressively reorganised to enable strong security of tenure and energised the land economy of the state.”
He also canvassed improved access to finance, adding that land access played a central role in production process, and that same applied to guarantee systems for industrial, small business and personal loans. “Improved access to land would enable firms and individuals in the private sector to secure loans using land as collateral,” Olajugba said.
According to another professional, Mr. Chucks Omeife, to unlock the inherent capital in Nigeria will require total overhaul of the governance structure and the entire processes surrounding land administration.
He added that it would require a strong and effective governance structure that would create effective and enduring tenure security and reduce illegal transfers and series of endless litigation
Also, he said that strong institutional framework must be put in place.
According to him, all over the world, land has been considered as a very serious resource in terms of its capital generation potential.
However, he said this could only be possible due to seamless land administration which has removed the different encumbrances in terms of title perfection and documentations unlike what is currently the prevailing situation in Nigeria.
He said: “The current land administrative structure provided in the Land Use Act has stifled equity and denude tenure security which is antithetical to good land administration.
“The various inbuilt administrative processes in the Act contributes in no small measure to non realisation of the lofty ideas of land administration and its supposedly benefits for the country.”