Housing Corp. asks city for more land faster

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(Photo: Anteneh Aklilu)

The Federal Housing Corporation (FHC) is claiming that they need the Addis Ababa City Administration to speed up the process of accessing land so that they can build more housing projects. FHC is arguing that it appears they own more land than they actually do.
FCH appeared at the Parliament to report on is half year performance to the Urban Development, Construction and Transport Affairs standing committee. They said delays in housing construction are being caused because the city administration is taking too much time to obtain land for housing development.
FCH went on to report that securing title deeds to begin new projects is also taking more time than expected.
FHC, which was restructured two years ago, was expected to begin building new houses and expand its business. They recently announced new housing projects in the pipeline to be located in Addis Ababa.
FHC plans to build apartments along with 1,968 houses and other villas. In its half year report it did not mention anything about these projects.
FHC reportedly has identified several plots from places its already owns, but it has not yet settled the title deed issue with the city administration.
The corporation stated that it has classified 8 hectares of land from its own land deed in addition to four other hectares in the stated period
“In the budget year the corporation has targeted to make available 17 hectares of land from its own land deeds and nine hectares from the Addis Ababa City Administration for housing development,” the power point report presented to the standing committee explained.
The five hectares of land from the former Building Equipment Supply Enterprise, which merged with the housing corporation during the recent reestablishment of FHC has already been made available for a new housing project.
The report indicated that they have already obtained 17 hectares of land planned to be facilitated during the budget year for construction from their own plots. The report indicated that FHC had a large amount of land under its jurisdiction however in reality there was less than expected.
For housing development in Dire Dawa, which is also a federal city administration like Addis Ababa, the corporation has secured 4.1 hectares of land.
The six-month report indicated that the design work started last budget year is expected to be fully accomplished, while the actual performance is only 80 percent because some of the sites are not available.
This year, FHC revised the housing lease rate for business houses, undertook property re-valuation and furnishing.
The corporation has re-valued 92.7 percent of its houses located in Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa. In total, 18,457 properties and 17,117 houses have been re-valued.
FHC planned to collect 178.6 million birr from rental fees, accrued rent fees, contract renewals and other revenue sources. The report indicated that it has achieved 91 percent or 162.2 million birr from these sources. Besides rent and related revenues FHC has also earned 6.7 million birr or 42 percent of the target from compensation of bulldozed houses by the city administration.
The report has also added that in the stated period the corporation has earned 107 million birr or 80 percent of the target from warehouse leasing, sales of building materials like bricks and other related activities.
“In six months the corporation has earned a total of 297 million birr, while the target was 360 million birr,” the report added. This is partially because compensation secured from the Addis Ababa City Administration is below the target.