Mohammad Atabak believes that from the point of view of providing the required materials, the implementation of the annual construction plan of one million houses is possible and feasible, but the lack of infrastructure such as water, electricity and gas is likely to pose a serious challenge to this project.
The production of constructional materials can certainly meet the need for the construction of this number of houses per year, but not in a situation when power outages have taken the breath away of cement and steel factories, he noted.
He said that if the weakness of the infrastructure, especially in the field of energy supply (gas and electricity), is not eliminated, the implementation of this project will probably be challenged.
The deputy speaker of the parliament has recently said that by using the land, facilities and the capacity of the private sector, it is possible to build one million housing units in the country.
Speaking in a TV interview on August 29, Ali Nikzad referred to the plan for surge in housing construction, and said that the MPs presented the plan to the parliament, which became law yesterday.
He continued by pointing out that this plan is very progressive; in this plan, the issue of land and the transfer of government lands to the Ministry of Transport and Urban Development was accelerated.
Also, the deputy Head of Iran’s Mass Construction Association Iraj Rahbar has recently said the country’s contractors are capable of constructing one million housing units a year if the necessary funding and land is provided.
Mentioning a plan for the construction of one million affordable housing units per year by the new government, Rahbar said: “allocating land and financing are two important factors for the successful implementation of any housing project, and if these two are provided, building one million housing units per year will be easily possible.”
The official noted that over the last three years, many efforts have been made to allocate the needed land for housing projects including the National Housing Action Plan to the Ministry of Transport and Urban Development, but the land has not been provided as needed.
Rahbar further stressed that there are different ways to attract financial resources for housing construction projects including the use of private sector potentials.
If the trust between the private sector and the government is restored, the issue of taxation on housing projects is resolved and the government’s dues to the private sector contractors are paid on time, mass builders will be more motivated to participate in construction projects, he said.
The official noted that private sector investors have huge resources that can be guided into mass construction projects if they are encouraged and appropriate incentives are considered by the government.
Referring to the recent rise in the prices of cement and steel as main data-x-items used in construction, he continued: "The rise in the prices of cement and steel is one of the obstacles in housing production that the government must address; the government has provided all the necessary facilities including cheap energy for the cement and steel production units, but we see that such products are exported instead of being supplied to the domestic market.”
In early August, Mahmoud Mahmoudzadeh, deputy transport, and urban development minister announced that planning has been made and preparations have been done to start constructing 1.3 million affordable housing units across the country.
Mahmoudzadeh said the required regulations have been prepared and facilities have been created to provide land for the mentioned housing units by the next government.
“With the measures taken, the conditions are more favorable for the new government to begin the work,” he noted.
Meanwhile, Iran’s newly appointed Transport and Urban Development Minister Rostam Qassemi said his ministry will strongly pursue the National Housing Action Plan during his tenure.
“The implementation and completion of the National Housing Action Plan, for which a lot of efforts have been made, will continue in the 13th government,” Qassemi said on Thursday.
“Providing affordable housing for lower classes is the priority of the ministry,” he stressed.
Underlining some of his ministry’s major plans during his office, the official said: “Strengthening various sectors of transport including land, air, sea and rail will be on the agenda and we will try to increase the share of transport in the country’s Gross Domestic Product.”
The official further noted that his ministry will try to complete the semi-finished projects and fulfill the demands of the government and people.
Started in winter 2018, the National Housing Action Plan aims to construct 400,000 small and medium-size apartments (70-100 square meters in size) across the country and particularly in Tehran, where housing prices have risen most sharply.
Nearly half of the total number of the said houses will be constructed in Tehran’s suburban “new towns” such as Parand and Pardis, respectively located in the west and east of the city.
Back in March, former Transport Minister Mohammad Eslami had announced that 510,000 residential units will be provided for the applicants under the framework of the National Housing Action Plan during the current year.
In early September 2019, the registration of the National Housing Action Plan was started from Kerman Province. The second round of registration began in ten other provinces in November that year.
Applicants in Sistan-Baluchestan, Qom, North Khorasan and South Khorasan provinces registered first and those from Kordestan, Kohgiluyeh-Boyerahmad, and Golestan came in the second stage, while from Chaharmahal-Bakhtiari, Hamedan, and Yazd provinces came in the third stage.
Source: Tehran Times