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Push govt affordable housing agenda - Minister charges board

BY: Doreen Andoh
Mr Francis Asenso-Boakye (left), the Minister of Works and Housing, delivering his address at the inuguration of the board of directors for the TDC
Mr Francis Asenso-Boakye (left), the Minister of Works and Housing, delivering his address at the inuguration of the board of directors for the TDC

The Ministry of Works and Housing has charged the reconstituted governing board of the TDC Development Company Limited to leverage its thriving business model to push the government’s affordable housing agenda.

The sector Minister, Mr Francis Asenso-Boakye, who gave the charge, said the evidence of the thriving business model included its impressive operational viability which resulted in an increase in the company’s revenue from GH¢75.7 million to GH¢78.8 million, representing a four per cent growth rate between 2018 and 2019.

Inaugurating the board in Accra yesterday, the minister said the company also paid GH¢1.4 million to the government as dividend in 2019, after making a net profit of GH¢27.65 million in the same year.

“It is imperative to note that the TDC has over the years consistently demonstrated an impressive operational viability which has resulted in increased profit margins and by extension, impacting the socio-economic development of the country.

“Again, the contribution of the TDC in the provision and development of infrastructure such as social housing, industrial enclaves and maintenance and construction of roads and public buildings, as well as provision of sewerage systems and street lights cannot be overlooked,” the Works and Housing Minister said.

Members

The seven-member board is chaired by Mr Kofi Brako, with Ms Alice Abena Ofori-Atta, Mr Seth Abladey and Ms Valerie Barbara Ashitey as some of the members.

The rest are Messrs Davis Ansah Opoku, Nicholas Arthur and Samuel Abakah.

Expectation

Mr Asenso-Boakye said notwithstanding the massive strides made, the government expected more from the company, especially in the implementation of its Affordable Housing Programme which he said remained one of the government’s top priority to the citizenry.

He said the housing policy aimed to increase access to safe, secure, adequate and affordable housing to low and middle-income earners.

The minister said the government’s new affordable housing policy direction was to leverage private sector investment by facilitating the provision of secure land, along with the requisite infrastructure, as well as work with relevant state institutions to grant tax exemptions, with the private sector providing the funding to undertake the actual construction works.

The minister said pursuant to that, the new policy direction of the government to drive the implementation of the programme was to leverage private sector investment.

“By this approach, the main role of the ministry is to facilitate the provision of secure land, along with the requisite infrastructure, and work with relevant state institutions to grant tax exemptions, while the private sector provides the funding to undertake the actual construction works,” he said.

Mr Asenso-Boakye said it was worthy to state that the ministry had completed the modalities for the implementation of the affordable housing programme.

He said in view of that, a lot would be expected from this new board in relation to the implementation of the policy, which when successful, would be an enduring legacy of the government.

The minister urged the board not to take over the day-to-day running of the company as that was the reserve of management, but rather collaborate with it to deliver the right policy direction that would enhance the profitability of the company.

Background

The TDC Development Company Ltd, originally the Tema Development Company, had the mandate to plan and develop about 63 square miles of public lands within the Tema acquisition area.

It was also to manage the township that would be created to provide accommodation for those engaged in economic activities.

However, over time, the acquisition areas under the TDC’s control got exhausted for which it had to innovate or die.

Consequently, in 2017, the TDC decided to convert from a corporation to a limited liability company with an expanded mandate under the name the TDC Development Company Limited.

The conversion enables the company to operate beyond the Tema acquisition area.

Mr Asenso-Boakye said with the company’s expanded mandate, there was no gainsaying that more was expected from the TDC, particularly in view of the government’s priority to develop affordable housing units across the country.

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