Study: Manila, PH is world’s fastest growing luxury home market

Robie de Guzman   •   March 8, 2019   •   4178

Elevated night view of Makati City, the financial capital of Metro Manila. (Rhouell Carino|PVI)

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine capital of Manila has been tagged as the world’s fastest growing luxury home market for 2018, based on a study published by Knight Frank Prime International Index.h

The latest report of property consultancy agency Knight Frank showed that Manila beat obvious candidates such as Berlin in Germany, Tokyo in Japan, Paris in France and Singapore in the ranking of top cities on how much prices for luxury homes have increased in the past year.

The report said the City of Manila experienced an increase in the prices of luxury homes by 11 percent in 2018, buoyed by the Philippines’ strengthening economy and an apparent shortage of luxury homes. Also contributing to the increase in prices are the low supply and the increased demand from wealthy foreigners living in Manila.

Knight Frank also reported that the country’s economy grew by six percent in 2018, which attracted more Filipino expatriates to invest in properties back home.

But despite its top ranking, the report said the overall growth in luxury home prices is dwindling, and Manila’s price growth is still far from last year’s top performers, which saw a 21 percent overall growth. The deceleration was attributed to the end of real estate low interest rates, which boomed in 2008.

The study also cited the significant slowing down of luxury home growth in the Philippines after the developers’ renewed their focus on more affordable housing amid predictions that there is more demand in the low to medium-end markets.

Apart from Manila, the only other Southeast Asian city that made it to the top ten of list of 100 cities was Singapore, which ranked 7th overall after registering a 9.1 percent increase in luxury home prices.

In the West, Edinburgh ranked second with 10.6 percent growth followed by Berlin, Germany with 10.5 percent, Munich and Buenos Aires both with 10 percent; Mexico city ranked sixth with 9.5 percent while Madrid landed at 9th pace after registering an increase of 8.1 percent in luxury home prices.

Boston, Massachusetts in the United States ranked 8th after gaining 8.6 percent increase while San Francisco placed at 10th.

Beijing, China ranked 25th with only four percent increase while Hong Kong ranked 47th overall with 1.8 percent increase in luxury home prices. – Robie de Guzman

AFP, PNP provide free ride to commuters amid limited public transport

Robie de Guzman   •   June 2, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) have deployed buses and trucks to help transport stranded commuters after Metro Manila shifted to general community quarantine (GCQ) starting June 1.

PNP spokesperson Brigadier General Bernard Banac said they sent three police trucks from Camp Crame to Commonwealth Avenue in Quezon City, Navotas, and Bacoor, Cavite to assist employees returning to work on the first day of Metro Manila’s transition to GCQ.

“Naging maayos at mapayapa at ito ay magandang panimula subalit may mga natanggap din tayo na ulat ng traffic build up at congestion at mga pedestrians at essential workers na hindi nakasakay,” Banac said.

“Agad nagpalabas ng kautusan si PNP chief PGen. Archie Gamboa sa ating mga units na tumulong na magsakay ng mga stranded na essentials workers, maging ang mga PNP Trucks natin ay pinalabas din upang makapaghatid ng mga manggagawa sa kani kanilang destination,” he added.

The military, for its part, deployed six trucks to Batasan and Philcoa areas in Quezon City to augment limited public transport.

“AFP Chief General Filemon Santos Jr. commits to continue to provide commuter assistance in coordination with MMDA to alleviate the concerns of the riding public,” AFP spokesperson Brigadier General Edgard Arevalo said.

Arevalo assured that other military vehicles are on standby for dispatch when requested by authorities. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Lea Ylagan)

Mabigat na trapiko at hirap sa pagsakay, bumungad sa unang araw ng GCQ sa Metro Manila

Robie de Guzman   •   June 1, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Mabigat na daloy ng mga sasakyan sa kahabaan ng EDSA ang bumungad sa mga motorista sa unang araw ng general community quarantine (GCQ) sa Metro Manila.

Ito ay dahil sa bulto ng mga pribadong sasakyan, pampasaherong bus na ginamit sa augmentation program ng Department of Transportation (DOTr), at mga taxi at transport network vehicle service na pinayagan nang bumiyahe sa ilalim ng GCQ.

Nakadagdag rin sa pagsisikip ng trapiko sa kalsada ang pag-arangkada ng point-to-point (P2P) buses, shuttle services ng mga kumpanya at mga bisikleta.

Nagsimula na ring gamitin ngayong araw ng mga pampasaherong bus ang innermost lane ng EDSA.

Pero hindi natapos ang loading at unloading bay areas sa ilalim ng MRT-3 stations kaya apat na istasyon lang muna ang hihintuan ng mga bus upang magsakay at magbaba ng mga pasahero.

Ito ay ang North Avenue station, Quezon Avenue, Ayala at Taft Stations.

Batay sa patakaran ng Inter-Agency Task Force, limitado lang ang bilang ng mga pasaherong maaaring sumakay sa mga pampublikong sasakyan pang masunod ang panuntunan sa physical distancing.

Hindi rin lahat ng ruta ng pampasaherong bus ang pinayagang magbalik-pasada kaya pahirapan ang pagsakay ng mga pasahero.

May ilang pasahero na inabot ng ilang oras sa paghihintay ng masasakyan habang may iba namang naglakad na lang papasok sa trabaho.

Ang construction worker na si Jonathan Suico, madaling araw pa umalis sa Rizal ngunit naglakad rin pagdating sa may EDSA-Shaw Boulevard dahil walang masakyang bus papunta sa kanyang trabaho.

“Pupunta sana dun sa dulo kung may bus, eh ang masama nga eh, wala po eh. Wala pong magagawa po ma’am eh. Maglalakad na lang po,” ani Suico.

Humingi naman ng pang-unawa ang DOTr sa publiko sa limitadong transportasyon.

Ipinaalala rin ng kagawaran na naka-community quarantine pa rin naman ang Metro Manila at hindi pa maaaring lubusang magbalik-operasyon ang sektor ng transportasyon.

“Humihingi rin kami ng inyong pag-iintindi kasi nga ho, ‘wag nating kalimutan na tayo ay quarantine pa rin ho… At ang nangingibabaw po sa pagdating sa kagawaran ng transportasyon, ay ang inyong kalusugan, ang inyong kaligtasan,” ani Transportation Assistant Secretary Giovanni Lopez sa isang panayam sa UNTV ngayong Lunes.

Samantala, sinabi naman ni Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) Chairman Martin Delgra III na pinag-aaralan na nila ang paglalagay ng bus stops sa Cubao at Ortigas Station kung saan malaki ang bulto ng mga pasahero.

“Nakita natin na full force ngayong araw yung mga bus na binigyan natin ng special permit so tuloy tuloy,” ani Delgra.

Tulad sa mga tren, limitado lang din sa 50-porsyento ng kapasidad ng mga pampublikong sasakyan ang bilang ng mga pasaherong maaaring isakay.

Dapat rin ay nasusunod sa mga ito ang physical distancing at iba pang health protocols upang maiwasan ang pagkalat ng coronavirus disease. – RRD (mula sa ulat ni Correspendent Harlene Delgado)

Cebu, Mandaue and Zamboanga cities placed under GCQ starting June 1

Marje Pelayo   •   June 1, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — Aside from Metro Manila, several areas have also been placed also under general community quarantine (GCQ) for 15 days starting Monday (June 1).

Based on the latest announcement by Presidential Spokesperson Secretary Harry Roque, these areas include the entire Region VII or Central Visayas particularly Cebu City and Mandaue City as well as Zamboanga City in Mindanao.

The decision to place these areas under GCQ came after their local governments appealed to the Inter-Agency Task Force against COVID-19 for a reclassification of quarantine status.

These areas are in addition to the previously announced regions and localities which will be under GCQ starting June 1, namely the National Capital Region, Pangasinan, Regions II, III, IV-A and Davao City.

Meanwhile, all other areas not mentioned will be placed under modified general community quarantine (MGCQ) starting next month. 

Therefore, starting Monday (June 1), two community quarantine measures will be implemented — the general community quarantine (GCQ) where most industries and economic sectors will be allowed to operate; and the modified general community quarantine (NGCQ) which is the last phase towards the transition to the ‘new normal.’ MNP (with details from Rosalie Coz)

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