Monday, June 21, 2010

Mozambique Former President Chissano Launches Housing Project

Mozambique: Chissano Launches Housing Project

21 June 2010
Courtesy of
Maputo — The Joaquim Chissano Foundation (FJC) on Monday launched in Maputo a project, budgeted at 100 million US dollars to build a total of 1,836 homes for young people.

The "Casa Jovem" ("Houses for Youth") project is the first major investment proposed by the FJC, which was set up by the country's former president, Joaquim Chissano, shortly after he left office in 2005. The project has been designed by the company Charas Ltd, and will be implemented by the real estate development firm ImoX.

The 1,836 apartments will be in a condominium in the outlying Maputo suburb of Costa do Sol. The condominium will also include shops, banks, a children's playground, sports fields and a police station.

There will be four types of homes. The cheapest will cost 25,000 US dollars and the most expensive 120,000 dollars.

Speaking at the launch, Chissano said the project would have a positive, "and perhaps even lasting" impact on the lives of the beneficiaries.

"I am fully aware that the housing problem is national in scale and affects the majority of Mozambicans, particularly young people", he said. "So we are launching the Casa Jovem project aware that we are contributing to solving only part of the problem - in fact, a very small part of a huge problem. But this is only the start of our participation, as partners, in the gradual solution of a problem that affects all of us".

Erik Charas, of the company Charas Lda, explained that the beneficiaries will be young people up to 40 years of age. But not any young people - Charas said that only people with an income will be eligible.

Furthermore repaying a mortgage is out of the question for the vast majority of Mozambicans. Charas said that a couple with a joint income of 25,000 meticais (abut 730 US dollars) a month would be able to pay off a mortgage on one of these homes over 30 years.

By Mozambican standards this is a large sum. The statutory minimum monthly wages announced in April range between 1,593 and 3,483 meticais, depending on sector of activity.

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