Wed | Sep 20, 2017

Chang warns NHT raid will lead to hike in interest rates

Published:Thursday | February 21, 2013 | 2:39 PM

Monique Grange, Assistant News Editor

The Gleaner/Power 106 News Centre



Opposition Spokesman on Housing Dr. Horace Chang is advising the Government to find alternative sources of funding instead of taking money from the National Housing Trust.



He believes a drawdown on NHT funds will ultimately lead to an increase in the interest rates paid by mortgagers.



Dr. Chang says while he is cognizant of the Government’s fiscal challenges, taking money from the NHT’s surplus and increasing interest rates will have consequences.



He says increasing interest rates will put pressure on middle income earners who he notes are already burdened.



Dr. Chang is reiterating that the NHT funds would best be used to expand the construction sector.



Chairman of the NHT, Easton Douglas said that no decision has been taken on whether the interest rates will be increased.



He says the NHT board is conducting an analysis before deciding on the way forward.



Meanwhile, Dr. Chang says he doesn’t accept the Prime Minister’s explanation that the alternative to taking the $45 billion from the NHT would be to tax construction material and other basic necessities.



He has described Portia Simpson Miller’s statement as a nice political explanation.



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