By Fatima Muhammad
JEDDAH — The Ministry of Housing is preparing to provide 1.5 million housing units in the next five years, Saudi Minister of Housing Majed Bin Abdullah Al Huqail said Sunday.
Addressing real estate investors at the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry, he said banks are not playing the role required to providing loans for houses as their contribution is only 200,000 housing units out of the existing 6 million housing units. He added that banks are using only rent and Murabaha Islamic systems out of 12 available banking options. He pointed out that the government is contributing 65% to the housing sector.
Al Huqail highlighted the role of the private sector program that the ministry has, which he said is put up to encourage partnership with the private sector. He added that they have 80 investment opportunities that can offer up to 110,744 housing units.
He noted that the main goal of the ministry is to increase housing ownership from 47% to 52% under the kingdom’s Vision 2030.
He further said that according to official figures issued by the General Authority for Statistics, the need for housing units has reached 1.46 million between 2015-2019, adding that the construction sector is growing by 6.7 percent.
Moreover, Al Huqail said the ministry has adhered to its promise and presented 15,643 housing units as part of the 280,000 housing units which the ministry is targeting in 2017.
He likewise said the ministry will provide infrastructure development to lands that are to be taxed. He added that the ministry will launch Itmam Service Center which will include 12 government bodies that will have branches in different regions to make it easy for developers to issue licenses. In addition, he highlighted the role that Wafi program will play in organizing the real estate sector to ensure the rights of investors and consumers and prevent manipulations.