Cement Manufacturers in the country have agreed to beat down prices of cement to N2600 to reduce housing deficit in the country.
This followed the release of 2000 hectares of land and titled documents released by 24 States for the Federal Government’s Social Housing programme.
Manufacturers like Dangote Cement, Bua Cement and Lafarge Cement have agreed to discount their products to N2600 per bag for the projects.
The agreement was reached after a review meeting on the Economic Sustainability Plan implementation which was presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, and the three major cement manufacturers in the country.
Also, a total of 17 States have also indicated interest to participate in the Solar Power programme, another important element of the ongoing Economic Sustainability Plan, through which the Buhari administration intends to create more jobs while improving access to power and affordable housing for majority of Nigerians.
Highlighting the progress so far, the Vice President assured that the Federal Government will ramp up efforts to so more Nigerians have access to electricity and affordable housing.
According to the presentation made by the Managing Director of the Rural Electrification Agency (REA), Ahmad Salihijo, the Solar Power Naija team has had engagements with six states who have identified private sector developers and has also selected Akwa Ibom, Ekiti and Kano as pilot states for the state-guaranteed transaction model for the solar power programme.
He explained that, “REA is currently tracking transactions worth N55 billion, potentially contributing the first two million connections in Nigeria and providing thousands of jobs. “For instance, the programme is currently tracking four transactions in the commercial bank upstream channel contributing 3,500 jobs and 100,000 connections,” Salihijo said. The MD added that nine participants have submitted applications for over N4 billion of the N20 billion allocated with three companies close to receiving disbursements.
According to the MD, “Bleu Camel Energy with a loan amount of N3 billion is targeting to create 600 jobs; Sunking, another investor with a loan amount of N3 billion will create 1,500 jobs; Auxno Solar with N300 million loan amount targets 100 jobs while Emerald Industrial Co. is seeking N3 billion funding to manufacture 100,000 Solar Home Systems and smart meters.”
Managing Director/CEO of the Family Homes Fund Limited (FHFL) – the implementing agency for the Social Housing scheme, Femi Adewole, stated that 17,584 units across 16 locations are now in the pipeline.
“We are having a successful push in assembling land to feed the housing construction. So far about 2156.4ha have been assembled ready for development. This has the capacity to accommodate about 65,000 homes,” he said. Adewole further said that under the ESP Social Housing programme, Nigerians would be given at least a 15-year period with a monthly payment at six percent interest rate to pay for each housing unit. While the rates are significantly low, the MD noted that this period can also be extended through refinancing.
“This will help to improve access to housing for low-income people in the informal sector who-(otherwise) will not have an opportunity to access a mortgage,” he stated.