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KINGSTON — Minister of Housing, Environment and Water, Dr. Horace Chang, says details of Government's national housing policy will be presented in Parliament, when it resumes after the summer recess.

Speaking at Friday's July 29 titles presentation for the Eden Park housing development, at the Eden Park sports complex, Jack's River, St. Mary Dr. Chang said that the policy will detail categories and quantities of housing solutions, other options for development, costs and affordability and timeframe for delivery.

He added that special focus will be placed on informal settlements, and how the administration will deal with these settlements.  

“We are doing serviced lots, starter homes, one bedroom and two-bedroom units, to cater to all sectors of the society and to ensure there are adequate numbers,” Dr. Chang said.

 He pointed out that the Government will be developing some of the solutions, and efforts are being made to include private sector input to ensure that the volumes are available where demand exists.

“What I want to…ensure (is) that, as a Jamaican, you can find a place to live that is properly planned and organized, and environmentally sound. This land is our land. I don’t wish to have any of my Jamaican citizens considered squatters,” the Minister said

He stated that his mission, as Minister of Housing, is to ensure that the country overcomes the challenges as fast it can, despite the shortage of funds.

Dr. Chang said the administration has worked “quite effectively and assiduously” to reduce interest rates, which should greatly benefit persons sourcing mortgages and assured that the administration’s policies could see interest rates falling to between eight and nine per cent, the same as  the National Housing Trust’s (NHT).

Dr. Chang assured that when details of the housing policy are outlined in the House of Representatives, the country will see a long term plan to provide housing for the people, reducing incidences of informal settlements and replacing them with planned, properly structured developments that are sustainable.

 

By DOUGLAS McINTOSH, JIS Reporter