Shs51 billion low cost housing project inked

A low cost house in Kiryandongo. PHOTO BY STEPHEN OTAGE

KAMPALA- Low cost housing developers in sub-Saharan Africa are poised to benefit from a €15m (about Shs51 billion) partnership between the European Investment Bank (EIB) and Shelter Afrique.

The housing partnership, the first direct engagement in the housing sector by the EIB in sub-Saharan Africa was formally signed at Shelter Afrique’s headquarters in Nairobi by Pim van Ballekom, European Investment Bank Vice President responsible for sub-Saharan Africa and Alassane Bâ, managing director of Shelter Afrique.

“Supporting local developments will address the challenges of low cost housing, contribute to poverty reduction and go a long way towards achieving Millennium Development Goals,” said Pim van Ballekom.

Under the initiative, Shelter Afrique will provide EIB backed loans to local developers engaged in the construction of eligible affordable housing estates, including the provision of related community infrastructure and services such as clean water, sanitation, power and roads, as well as site clearance and preparation.

It is expected that projects will be developed in a number of sub-Saharan countries, starting with Kenya and Rwanda and that schemes will be integrated into relevant national and local urban development plans.

Priority
To benefit from the programme, each housing project must be technically sustainable and financially viable. Priority will be given to development of affordable housing in urban centres and in areas linked to existing transport and basic infrastructure.

The EIB-backed Shelter Afrique lending initiative is expected to particularly benefit SME-type developers, whose capacity Shelter Afrique would contribute to further build up.

The overall initiative is expected to stimulate total housing investments of around €50 million (about Shs170 billion) with significant local job creation. Shelter Afrique can finance a maximum of 60 per cent of the development cost of an eligible project.

THE MONEY

Shs170 billion: Average amount of money that the overall housing project is expected to stimulate in investments

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