18 May 2014

Ethiopia: International Companies Called Upon to Accelerate Housing Projects

The Addis Abeba Saving Houses Development Enterprise (AASHDE) is planning on giving projects in the 40/60 housing scheme to international companies, in order to deliver the long awaited houses in a relatively short amount of time.

The 164,779 one, two and three bedroom houses, which are planned to be built for customers who are currently saving their required amount every month, are expected to be given to international companies with greater capacities in the near future, according to Kinde Bizuneh, general manager of the Enterprise.

The Enterprise, in existence since July 2012, was established with the aim of building and distributing houses to the middle class segment of the city dwellers, who can afford to save 40pc of the cost of the houses, while the rest will be facilitated by a bank loan from the Commercial Bank of Ethiopia (CBE) - hence the name of the project.

This program, which is being followed with much anticipation from the participants of the scheme, is not going as planned. Only 6,418 houses are under construction to date, with the highest completion rate being 58pc since the Enterprise started construction in the last fiscal year. The last of the customers of the program will get their houses after a quarter of a century if construction continues at the same rate, according to the nine-month report of the Enterprise.

The AASHDE has created job opportunities for 2,360 citizens over the last nine-months, according to the report, but is hindered by a lack of necessary infrastructure provisions, like roads, water and power to the sites, and problems with land and other input supplies. This is in addition to the limited capacity of the contractors involved in the projects.

Despite the fact that most of the contractors undertaking the construction of the G+12 buildings in the project - which are located in different sites around the city, mainly in Sengatera in Kirkos District and Crown in Akaki Kaliti District - are level one contractors, they are not allocating the necessary human and machinery inputs to finalise the buildings on time, stated Kinde, in the press conference that was held at his officer on Queen Elisabeth II road to elaborate the nine-month performance of the Enterprise.

The enterprise has spent upwards of 1.25 billion Br over the last nine months for projects and the purchase of inputs, according to the report. It was able to create market linkages for 96 small and micro enterprises that are engaged in producing and installing different inputs in the construction process.

The construction of around 6,500 houses is expected to start before the end of the year and another 15,000 in the next fiscal year, while the Enterprise plans to finalise the structural works of the 6,418 houses under construction before the rainy season comes, according to the general manager, who was in a rather confrontational mood and dodging questions from journalists at the event.

One, two and three bedroom houses under the scheme cost 162,000 Br, 250,000 Br and 386,000 Br, where as. The monthly saving of this houses is 1,033 Br, 1,575 Br and 2,453 Br for five years, respectively. To date, close to 2.5 billion Br has been collected from deposits by customers of the housing scheme, according to Kinde.


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