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Federal Mortgage Bank Initiates Revival of 46 Abandoned Housing Projects Nationwide

In a major move to address Nigeria’s housing deficit, the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) has embarked on a rehabilitation process to revive about 46 abandoned housing projects across the country. This initiative is being carried out in partnership with Shelter Afrique Development Bank, a pan-African finance institution that exclusively supports the development of the housing and real estate sector in Africa.

According to the FMBN Managing Director, Shehu Usman Osidi, reviving these housing estates is a top priority for the bank. The intensified collaboration with Shelter Afrique Development Bank will help provide construction and mortgage financing to developers in Nigeria, enabling the completion of abandoned projects.

“Nigeria has over 46 abandoned projects in the 36 states, and the FMBN is determined to revive them,” Osidi stated. “Our findings show that banks have entered into housing financing agreements with state governments, but unfortunately, many states reneged on their commitment to provide infrastructure, leading to the projects being abandoned.”

Osidi further explained that Shelter Afrique Development Bank offers infrastructure financing, which will be leveraged to complete the projects and ultimately provide much-needed housing units to Nigerians.

As the second-largest shareholder in Shelter Afrique Development Bank with about 15 per cent holding, Nigeria aims to explore various funding avenues to deliver 100,000 housing units to Nigerians this year.

The FMBN is reviewing previously abandoned memoranda of understanding signed with the organization to explore the benefits Nigerians could gain from this renewed partnership.

Thierno-Habib Hann, the CEO of Shelter Afrique, emphasized the organization’s commitment to promoting its development financing agenda and identifying Nigeria as a destination for investments, citing the country’s over $25 billion in annual Diaspora remittances.

“We are ready to collaborate with FMBN and other institutions across Nigeria to address the housing gap,” Hann said. “As a development finance institution, we are very well positioned to collaborate with the government of Nigeria, and in this trip, we met all the leadership, including the vice president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, who is fully committed to driving the growth of the sector and investing more in it, knowing that housing creates jobs.”

In a related development, the FMBN has announced that it collected about N100 billion in remittances through the National Housing Fund (NHF) in 2023, marking the first time the annual collection has exceeded N100 billion in the bank’s history.

The NHF scheme, established by the FMBN, facilitates the continuous flow of low-cost funds for long-term investment in housing through 2.5 per cent monthly deductions from employees’ basic salaries.

As Nigeria grapples with a significant housing deficit, the FMBN’s initiative to revive abandoned housing projects in collaboration with Shelter Afrique Development Bank represents a crucial step towards addressing the country’s housing needs. By leveraging innovative financing solutions and partnerships, the government aims to provide affordable and accessible housing for Nigerians nationwide.

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