“The New Urban Communities Authority (NUCA) decided to cancel the third stage of the middle-income housing project Dar Misr in Greater Cairo, to be developed by adding swimming pools, industrial lakes, and then re-offer in the form of a compound project, under the name of luxury housing,” said Delta Research Centre in a report issued recently.
The report said that the government will develop the same buildings of Dar Misr project, but the site, green areas, and landscaped will be redesigned and services will be provided to owners.
This development is due to the state’s interest in the sustainability of housing projects, which requires a reasonable enough profit for the independence of the NUCA from government support, according to the centre.
The report pointed out that this investment thinking has led to increasing prices of units directed to middle-income people at the same time these units are low quality compared to products provided to the above-middle-income people, who are able to purchase them.
The government chose to be aligned with the sustainability of the project instead of aligning itself with the goal of the project itself, adding some signs of luxury, such as swimming pools, and then offering the same units to those who are interested in distinguished housing.
Meanwhile, low-income people will remain suffering with their closed units in the social housing project because these units are not matching the needs and capabilities of poor people. Besides, the government put some obstacles in owning of workers in the informal sector who are representing the majority of Egypt’s population and the vast majority of the poor units in such project.
The report elaborated that semi-formal workers and pensioners are required to pay more than twice the amount paid by public employees. As a result, only 5% of the units over the past three years have been allocated to those who do not work officially, meanwhile, this percent increased to reach 19%, during the current fiscal year 2107/2018 after changing some of the conditions of owing a unit in social housing project.
The report gave an example noting that New Qena City has delivered 1,000 social housing units and non were inhabited.
As for middle-income people, the report pointed out that the government decided to retreat from Dar Misr project, unlike Sakan Misr project.
According to the latest income and expenditure research for 2015, the Egyptians spend about 17.5% of their income on housing, electricity, and gas bills. The value of the instalments for a large number of housing projects currently stands at EGP 3,000 per month. This means that the middle-income housing targets persons their salary no less than EGP 17,000.