A new innovative scheme aiming to address the need to scale up construction of homes and reduce the cost of mortgages to enable people in low and middle-income families afford homes has been launched.
The scheme has been made successful through an agreement signed between the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) and Sustainable Housing Solutions (SHS) Holdings.
The partnership is the latest step in the UNOPS Social Impact Investing Initiative (S3I), which aims to attract financing from the private sector to national development projects in emerging markets. The agreement aims to utilize proven innovative technologies to accelerate large-scale construction projects in some of the world’s most challenging environments.
UNOPS Executive Director, Grete Faremo noted that the Sustainable Development Goals calls for new and bold partnerships.
“We now bring together expertise, ideas, and financing from a broad range of partners – including governments, the public sector and also the private sector. By working together, sharing the same goals, we can begin to make a real difference to people’s lives,” said Grete Faremo.
The technology is earthquake and hurricane resistant and is compatible with the utilization of renewable energy and non-toxic insect-repellent properties. The projects will provide job opportunities and training programs for communities to develop skills in the construction of affordable homes.
UNOPS and SHS will begin to work on projects this year in Ghana, India, Kenya, and the Caribbean, to help build more than 260,000 affordable homes. The concept aims to provide a ‘turn-key solution’ to reducing the current shortfall of tens of millions of decent dwellings.
SHS Holdings Director, Dr. Allen Zimbler said that they were proud to have partnered with UNOPS and work together alongside other world-class partners in resolving the significant housing crisis in the developing world and beyond.
“This is a unique legacy project that will also ensure positive environmental, social and economic impact, create thousands of jobs and boost livelihoods,” added Dr.Allen Zimbler.
The new partnership will also explore new opportunities in the renewables market. UNOPS will work with MYRA-SHS Energy, a subsidiary of SHS which focuses on investments in renewable energy projects and associated infrastructure. Together they will support projects which increase clean and efficient energy supplies for more than one billion people living without access to electricity.