More real estate development outside Metro Manila seen in 2019

MANILA, Philippines – Real estate developers should also look outside Metro Manila for their projects to complement the government's own infrastructure projects, according to real estate services firm Colliers International.

In a release on Thursday, March 21, Colliers said the real estate sector should take advantage of the Build, Build, Build program which they expect will sustain the country's growth "over the next 2 to 3 years."

Outside the capital, Cavite is seen to become a more viable business hub. The firm also said Pampanga should be groomed to be a primary investment site, given the lack of developable land in Metro Manila.

Other reasons seen to bolster growth are lower inflation and lower income tax rates, which could help boost the retail sector. 

Colliers said that outsourcing firms, which are seen to sustain demand for office spaces, will continue to seek the Philippine Economic Zone Authority's proclaimed offices outside Metro Manila.

Meanwhile, offshore gaming firms, which took up bulk of the Bay Area spaces, were also encouraged to "reemerge."

"Colliers expects a number of local governments taking a more concrete stance on offshore gaming operations, which should offer some clarification as to the expansion plans of these firms moving forward," the company said. 

As for residential spaces, Colliers expects "developers to be more aggressive in launching new projects in the fringes of central business districts, where land is cheaper."

"Meanwhile, we see sustained end-user demand for horizontal (house and lot)
projects especially in key areas outside Metro Manila," the firm added.

Aside from this, Colliers noted that the hotel sector could flourish despite the government missing its target last year of 7.4 million tourists.

"Colliers sees about a 10% rise in foreign arrivals in 2019, or 7.8 million tourists.
This should sustain hotel occupancy at around 69% over the next 12 months," the firm added.

These positive projections were held up despite the revised outlook on the country's gross domestic product, which was lowered due to the delay in the passage of the 2019 national budget.

Aside from the stalled budget, Colliers also noted that there may be speed bumps in development due to lack of skilled construction workers. (READ: Duterte does not favor deporting illegal Chinese workers– Rappler.com