The real estate sector will prosper by 2020 following the implementation of 14 new cities in Egypt which are worth about EGP 388bn, the Minister of Housing, Utilities and Urban Communities, Assem El-Gazzar, said on Monday at the fifth real estate summit that was organised by the American Chamber of Commerce in Egypt (AmCham Egypt), entitled ‘Scaling up: Egypt’s Real Estate Industry.’
“Is it better to spend on new urban communities now because most Egyptian cities are old and cannot supply the needs of its citizens in the future? Some experts say that spending on education and health is better, but we are very late in building new cities,” he noted.
Currently, the country is suffering from a gap between the offered and required social housing units because of the high population growth, he added, noting that Egyptians live on about 6% of their land area.
The land area we live on is not enough to build the necessary businesses for the economy, he mentioned, asserting that all the ministry’s plans are being implemented in line with the country’s master plan until 2052.
“We will exert considerable effort to expand in the country’s land area which has a developmental potential,” he noted, praising the government’s road network project which links all the new destinations together.
Furthermore, the minister affirmed that his government believes in the role of the private sector in supporting the economy, pointing out that the New Administrative Capital is a prototype for new smart cities which the country plans to implement.
“The New Capital is a commercial name, it is a New Administrative Centre,” he said, adding that the ministry offered 350,000 social housing units over the past two years.
“We will offer about 700,000 units in 2020 which is a huge number of social housing units, and we still have a gap because of the population growth,” he explained, stressing that the ministry is not responsible for offering the units as it is the role of the private sector.
He also said that he will meet representatives of the World Bank Group next week to discuss how to engage the private sector in the social housing projects.