Ministry of Housing, Utilities & Urban Communities (Egypt)

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Arab Republic of Egypt
Ministry of Housing, Utilities & Urban Communities
وزارة الاسكان والمرافق والمجتمعات العمرانية
Coat of arms of Egypt (Official).svg
Agency overview
JurisdictionEgypt Egypt
HeadquartersTahrir, Cairo
Agency executive
WebsiteOfficial website

Ministry of Housing, Utilities and Urban Communities (MOHUUC) is the Egyptian ministry responsible for the construction, and infrastructure of urban communities and utilities. Its headquarters are located in Cairo and Mostafa Madbouli[1] has served as minister since 2014. This ministry works in affiliation with the New Urban Communities Authority.[2]

History[edit]

On 19 of September 2015, The Ministry of Urban Communities was merged with the Ministry of Housing.[1][3] The Ministry of Housing, Utilities and Urban Communities, as it is now called, was working in 2018, with the UN Habitat for creating strategies and solutions for Egypt's housing needs.[4]

The role of the ministry[edit]

According to presidential decree No. 164/ 1996, some of the roles of the ministry include:

  • Prepare plans for urban development
  • Supervise towns and villages planning and housing projects proceed in accordance with the policies of the state
  • Prepare building plans for public utilities, such as drinking water and sanitation, and oversee and follow-up throughout the design and implementation phases
  • Prepare comprehensive regional building plans, prioritizing economic and social benefits to the Egyptian people
  • Work in the development of new cities and villages
  • Follow best practices, by staying up to date with the latest technical and applied research in the area of Housing, Utilities and Urban Development
  • Develop designs required for the building of public housing, and propose public policy for housing maintenance
  • Work with Arab country investors and other foreign investors
  • Work in cooperation with other ministries, agencies and stakeholders

Ministers[edit]

  • Mostafa Madbouli, Minister as of 2014
  • Eng. Ameen Abdel Monem, Deputy Minister[5]

Housing in Egypt[edit]

It is a struggle for Egypt to keep up with housing needs due to its quickly increasing and existing population. For years, the state has taken it upon itself to provide housing for the poor but this has become unsustainable as it doesn't have the budget for this type of continued providence.[6]pg 85

Method of selling land[edit]

When the ministry has land available for sale, investors apply for it and provide a deposit. A lottery is held and those investors who did not get a plot are refunded their deposits by the Housing & Development Bank.[2] This method of land distribution can lead to speculation; investors believe they can make quick profits with resells. The repossession of land when projects are not completed is "rarely enforced" leading to empty lots and half-finished projects, as has been seen in 6th of October.[7]

In 2016, the ministry reported a profit of EGP 22.2 bn, made by selling land and residential units.[8]

Housing needs are addressed through foreign investors building in Egypt. In March 2015, 12.7 billion in contracts were in the works with Arab real estate developers constructing projects in New Cairo and 6th of October.[9] Since March 2014, a multibillion-dollar housing project was being discussed with Arabtec, a Dubai-based contractor.[10][11][12]

Housing needs are also addressed through loans. In 2015, the minister of housing said that part of the money from a $500 million loan to be received from the African Development Bank would go to social housing.[13] In 2016, it was reported that the Informal Sector Development Fund and Cairo Governorate would cover the costs of upgrading three slums in Cairo. A grant from the German Society for International Cooperation was also to contribute to the costs.[14]

Housing needs are also addressed through aid (grants) received from foreign governments. In a program that began on 28 August 2012 through 2018, the European Union earmarked 40 million Euros for the upgrading of the infrastructure of nine informal areas in and around Cairo, Giza and Qalyubia Governorates.[15][16]

The demand for housing[edit]

The minister of housing, Mustafa Madbouly, explained that "Egypt needs to build 500,000-600,000 new homes a year to keep up with demand, 70 percent of which should be aimed at the poor."[17] The situation has been so dire that for years some Egyptians have resorted to living (and working) near and in the cemeteries. One such place is The City of the Dead in Cairo.[17]

In July 2016, thousands of rental units were made available, as renting is easier than home ownership for many poor Egyptians. Three thousand rental units were made available in Suez.[18]

The Engineering Authority of the Armed Forces is normally the authority tasked with building government-subsidized housing (Social Housing Program), as in the 6000 units that were built in Alexandria in 2016. Whether those efforts would work to make a real difference remained to be seen, with critics saying the poor wouldn't qualify for the units.[19][20]

Mortgage banks[edit]

The system for providing mortgages to low and middle-income citizens expanded in 2017. [21]

New cities[edit]

President Anwar Al-Sadat began addressing the overcrowding in cities like Cairo by mandating the establishment of new complete cities. The first new city was 10th of Ramadan. The law (59/1979) initiated the building of new towns or cities but over the years some of these new areas failed to reach their target populations- with Egyptians, for a variety of reasons, choosing to remain living in the old, overcrowded cities.[7]

Nepotism[edit]

During President Hosni Mubarak's time in office, land was sometimes sold by the ministry, much below market value, as in the case of the Madinaty project.[22]

The bureaucracy involved in getting official building permits, and passing inspections on building projects makes many average middle-class people want to avoid the whole process. Paying petty bribes allows people to get things done much quicker.[6]

Informal settlements[edit]

According to the minister, as of 2015 between 40 - 50% of homes in urban areas were informal, meaning not built up to code. There are about 1,300 such areas in Egypt and some 300 are extremely unsafe.[14]

In early 2016, plans began for upgrading some of the slums in Cairo namely in Sayeda Zeinab, Mokattam, and Abdeen.[14] A plan to upgrade these areas and to build a million affordable homes to alleviate the continuing lack of housing was one of Egypt president's Abdel Fattah el-Sisi's promises. As he continued to deal with corruption in the country, he celebrated the phases to develop the slums, a project called Long Live Egypt with its own funding.[17][22][23] The Tahya Masr fund for the Long Live Egypt project was created to encourage citizens to donate to public housing and in 2014 was managed by a board of trustees, which included Basil El-Baz, Naguib Sawiris, Grand Mufti Ali Gomaa, Mohamed al-Amin, Major General Mohamed Amin Ibrahim Nasr, and headed by Alaa Youssef.[24] The first phases of Tahya Masr rehoused people living in slums, with 12,000 new units built.[25]

In July, 2018 the Participatory Infrastructure Project (PIP) was signed with Germany to address the correction of 9 informal settlements in and around Cairo, with an investment of $29.5 million Euros.[26]

Housing Affiliates[edit]

Utilities in Egypt[edit]

$74.5 million in U.S. aid was given to Egypt for Utilities management in 2007.[27]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Egypt's new Cabinet: What changed and what didn't?". Mada Masr. September 19, 2015.
  2. ^ a b "More Land Plots Available at 10th of Ramadan City in January". Invest Gate News. December 29, 2016.
  3. ^ "Ministry of Housing & Urban Communities". Ministry of Housing & Urban Communities. Retrieved 12 June 2018.
  4. ^ Omran, Hagar (13 May 2018). "UN-Habitat discusses final draft of Ministry of Housing strategy". Daily News Egypt. Retrieved 12 June 2018.
  5. ^ "Housing Egypt Conference October 27, 2015" (PDF). Assaif.
  6. ^ a b Piffero, Elena (2009). What Happened to Participation? Urban Development and Authoritarian Upgrading in Cairo's Informal Neighbourhoods. Odoya srl. ISBN 9788896026182. Retrieved 3 November 2016.
  7. ^ a b Hegazy, Ibrahim Rizk; Moustafa, Wael Seddik (June 2013). "Toward revitalization of new towns in Egypt case study: Sixth of October". International Journal of Sustainable Build Environment. 2 (1). doi:10.1016/j.ijsbe.2013.07.002.
  8. ^ "The Ministry of Housing Achieves a EGP 22.2 bn Profit in 2016". Invest Gate. December 29, 2016.
  9. ^ Farouk, Ehab (March 15, 2015). "Egypt signs MOUs with developers for $12.7 bln in projects-minister". Reuters.
  10. ^ Knecht, Eric; Smith, Matt; Al Sayegh, Hadeel (October 8, 2015). "Egypt's stalled $35 bln housing scheme: big dreams to harsh reality". Reuters.
  11. ^ Farouk, Ehab; Smith, Matt (March 17, 2015). "Egypt, Arabtec near agreement on $40 bln housing project -govt". Reuters.
  12. ^ Carvalho, Stanley; El Dahan, Maha; French, David; Heneghan, Tom (November 27, 2014). "Egypt housing project talks slowed by Arabtec board changes-minister". Reuters.
  13. ^ Knecht, Eric; King, Larry (December 13, 2016). "UPDATE 1-AfDB approves $500 million loan payment to Egypt". Reuters.
  14. ^ a b c "Ministry of Housing signs agreements to develop 3 informal settlements in Cairo". Daily News Egypt. January 3, 2016.
  15. ^ "Upgrading Informal Areas in the Greater Cairo Region". European Union External Action.
  16. ^ "EU provides €59 million of socio-economic support to Egypt" (PDF). European Union External Action. September 10, 2015.
  17. ^ a b c Noueihed, Lin; Georgy, Michael (December 9, 2015). "Egypt to build one million homes for poor to help ease shortage: minister". Reuters.
  18. ^ "Ministry of Housing offers 6,000 units for rent". Daily News Egypt. July 18, 2016.
  19. ^ Farid, Doaa (April 27, 2014). "Construction complete on 6,000 government-subsidised homes in Alexandria: Housing ministry". Daily News Egypt.
  20. ^ "Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights, April 2014" (PDF). Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights.
  21. ^ Mounir, Hossam (12 February 2017). "Mortgage companies participating in CBE initiative to finance low- to middle-income housing". Daily News.
  22. ^ a b Rios, Lorena (2015). "Egypt's Capital Mirage". Roads and Kingdoms.
  23. ^ Ismail, Amina; Noueihed, Lin (June 30, 2016). "In Egypt, Sisi's star fades as problems pile up". Reuters.
  24. ^ Masriya, Aswat (December 22, 2014). "Presidential decree appoints board of trustees of "Tahya Misr" fund". Ahram Online.
  25. ^ Mourad, Mahmoud (14 June 2016). "Egypt builds new homes to replace crumbling slums". Reuters (Wider Image). Retrieved 16 October 2018.
  26. ^ "Signing the Implementation Contract for German International Cooperation on Upgrading Infrastructure – 18th July 2018". Participatory Development Programme in Urban Areas.
  27. ^ "USAID Assistance Agreement No. 263-0270" (PDF). U.S. Department of State.

External links[edit]