West African property stakeholders converged on Lagos to strategise and explore ways to remove bottlenecks from the commercial real estate sector in West Africa.
The event was the 2023 West African Investment Property Summit.
According to Head, Real Estate Finance of Stanbic IBTC, Akinmihan Tola, the real estate sector has been a resilient industry that has been impacted by a macroeconomic environment.
He said, “We all know how the economy has evolved this year with inflation rising, with exchange rate volatility, interest rate as well, which is quite key to how these assets are funded.
But our perspective is that firstly the asset class is long term, it provides much business infrastructure to support people’s businesses, how people live and how people work and how people play,” he explained.
He also stated that the residential space is an important area the bank will be focusing on and has taken steps to ensure that they provide a catalyst for mortgages where people can draw on their pension savings and also support developers in developing those new Properties.
“We are expanding beyond the commercial real estate but also capitalising and growing the housing supply side as well” he stated.
Director, Capital Markets at JLL South Africa, Pepler Sandri, stated that the stage of the commercial real estate cycle is at a relatively low point, but added that there is hope on the horizon.
“Each country has different rates of recovery from the COVID-19 setback, Nigeria has had macro issues affecting their recovery.
The International Finance Corporation (IFC) and Green Building Market Transformation Programme contact for Lagos, Temilola Sonola stated that the organisation would like more green buildings rather than brown buildings to be built in the Nigerian market as it’s not as expensive as some people think.