Pakistan house financing - banking needs to push forward.

Byline: Faiza Saleem

Housing plays a key socio-economic development. According to UN about 3 billion people will need new housing and basic urban infrastructure by 2030. Without affordable housing financing solutions, many urban poor can't get decent formal housing, whereas weak economic condition of our country making the chances difficult. Currently, the total population of Pakistan is over 207 million people, and is the world's sixth most populous country. Due to poverty, inequality, macroeconomic, political and security conditions, natural disasters, unreliable power supply chain and now the Covid-19 pandemic pushed the country's rank low on the human development index, at 147th out of 188 countries. Economically the root cause of lack of house finance is low and stagnant investment rate. Now it's a major reason that constraint to achieve the goal. Therefore the housing finance in Pakistan is particularly low in the region or as compare to other South Asian countries.

Over the next 20 years, the annual urban population is increasing means the demand of housing is soaring. Around 47 percent of urban households live in substandard housing, or informal settlements called Katchi Abadis. Moreover, 10 percent people live in the jointly-owned home and merely 3 percent have own house. Therefore to solve these problems the present government has inaugurated housing scheme on July 2, 2020. Along that six projects will be supervise by the Federal Government Employees Housing Authority and one will be executed by the Pakistan Housing Authority Foundation.

Furthermore World Bank and its member International Finance Corporation IFC invested PKR 500 million (about $3.2 million) in Pakistan Mortgage Refinance Company Limited (PMRC) for Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Balochistan and FATA. This is first time when World Bank and IFC Co-investment supported by International Development Association's Private Sector Window (IDA, PSW) in Pakistan with the collaboration of State Bank of Pakistan. Government will provide affordable houses and targeted to construct rural areas in 400,000 housing units a year, Peri-urban areas 200,000...

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