The Rwanda-Morocco housing construction project by the Palmeraie Development Group and Development Bank of Rwanda (BRD) is set to start early next year, after the signing of a partnership treaty during the visit of King Mohammed VI of Morocco recently.
The memorandum sealed the partnership between the two bodies to put up 5000 affordable housing units.
According to the chief executive of BRD, Alex Kanyankole the two institutions are working on the final details of the project ahead of groundbreaking early in 2017 and the works will take 18 months.
Kanyankole told that they had, however, agreed on financing modalities of the project, estimated at US$68 million.
Palmeraie Development Group and BRD will contribute 30 per cent of the total value.
“The remaining 70 per cent, which is about $40 million (about Rwf3.2 billion), will come from Bank of Africa, also signatory to the agreement,” Kanyankole said.
The project will be located in Ndera in Gasabo District for the initial 2000 housing units.
Kanyankole however said that Palmeraie Development Group has set aside a total of 5000 housing units, noting that they were in the process of identifying other places for construction of the additional units.
Kanyankole added that the project mainly targets people who have previously been unable to afford housing and would come up with an innovative financial plan to ensure affordability.
The project also intends to change the nature of housing structure choises from bungalow to apartment blocks, which he noted are ideal in densely populated regions.
Palmeraie Development Group chief executive, Hicham Berrada Sunni who was also part of King Mohammed VI’s entourage during his visit to Rwanda recently, said the project was part of the extension program of the group to the rest of Africa.
Started over 30 years ago, the group has rich expertise in social and affordable housing.
The housing project comes at the right time when Rwanda is trying to address the issue of affordable housing in the country.
According to research findings by the Ministry of Infrastructure, City of Kigali, and the European Union Kigali is likely to face a housing shortage of 344,000 homes in 2020.
Currently, between 800 and 1,000 housing units are built every year, the majority targeting high-income earners, leaving a big portion without decent homes.
To help address the housing deficit, the city should construct at least 31,000 housing units every year, according to the study to make sure city dwellers get quality shelter.