Egypt spent LE 20 billion to develop unsafe areas: official

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Sun, 16 Sep 2018 - 11:34 GMT

Hany Younis, spokesperson for Ministry of Housing - press photo

Hany Younis, spokesperson for Ministry of Housing - press photo

CAIRO – 17 September 2018: Egyptian government has spent LE 20 billion to develop unsafe areas and provide decent housing for the residents of these areas, Hany Younis, spokesperson for the ministry of housing.

Younis added in a phone call to Sada El-Balad that President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi ordered to accelerate pace of implementing social housing projects, pointing out that about LE 100 billion have been spent to establish 600,000 social housing units over last several years.

Since the very beginning of his rule, Sisi was aware of the housing crisis in Egypt. He was always keen to establish new cities and launch massive housing projects to provide suitable accommodation to citizens.

The Ministry of Housing estimates that 40 percent of the population of Cairo lives in informal settlements, while the Informal Settlements Development Fund (ISDF), now part of the new Ministry for Urban Development, estimates that 75 percent of urban areas throughout Egypt isunplanned and 1 percent isunsafe.

Hence, President Sisi has sought to tackle housing problems in Egypt, and a plan was set to develop many unsafe areas in Cairo, which has the majority of Egypt’s slums, and to re-house residents of Egypt’s most dangerous slums. The government divided the slums into two categories. The first is the dangerous slums; the government pledged to eliminate dangerous slums by the end of 2018.

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Tahya Misr residential complex (Al-Asmarat district)

In May 2016, President Sisi promised to move all those living in slums to new flats over three years as part of an ambitious project expected to cost about LE 14 billion ($790 million).

In the same context, the Tahya Misr (Long Live Egypt) Fund, launched by Sisi in 2014, has been working on a three-phase strategy to eliminate Egypt’s shantytowns and re-house slum residents, including those living in Doueyka, Establ Antar and Ezbet Khair Allah. The project includes 15,000 housing units to re-house 60,000 slum residents. The first two phases of Tahya Misr are comprised of 12,000 flats. The third phase opened in 2017 and is comprised of 20,000 flats.

Meanwhile, Sisi launched a huge project last year to build a New Administrative Capital on the outskirts of Cairo at the cost of $45 billion. The first phase of the capital is expected to be completed by the end of 2018. The new capital will be divided into 20 districts that could house up to six million people. It is also planned to include educational institutions, hospitals, 40,000 hotel rooms, a theme park, solar plants and a new international airport.

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