Building Modern Land Administration Systems
Efficient and effective land administration underpins the very functioning of states and societies. Imagine a country where, for example, tenure to land cannot be secured or mortgages cannot be established in aid of property development. Across the world, key questions about land are surfacing, and the inability to answer them curtails social and economic development, environmental management, and good governance.
In the Philippines, land has been the subject of a multiplicity of inconsistent laws, regulations, processes, and standards, and has been managed by overlapping institutions with limited collaboration. Land information, unsurprisingly, has been neglected. Since data and information are everything, the country's record of land ownership weakens security of tenure; opens the existing land administration system to abuse; and denies the public, its commercial enterprises, and government a complete view of land ownership, impacting performance across sectors. What is more, limited supply of land and population growth will both exacerbate land use conflicts and intensify pressure on public services.
In 2011, the Bureau of Local Government Finance in the Department of Finance and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) joined hands to help 10 local government units (LGUs) improve public service. The LGUs piloted improved land administration initiatives—including valuation and taxation innovations—that generate sustainable local government revenues. Among the noteworthy outcomes from ADB's assistance and technology transfer included clarity in the property base, expansion in tax revenue, and improved local collection efficiency, all of which strengthen economic growth and finances.