Same Stage, New Actors – Reflections on the Ethiopian Affordable Housing Program

Andrej Došen | Antarin Chakrabarty

First published at 6th Ethiopian Cities Forum, 16th – 20th November 2014, in Dire Dawa, Ethiopia.

Ethiopian Affordable Housing Program was created as a response to the enormous challenge of housing in the country. Initially the program set an ambitious target of constructing 400,000 standardized and affordable condominium units, creating 200,000 jobs and supplying 6000 hectares of serviced land per annum between 2006 and 2010. While at the beginning, pressed by time and growing population, the main task was mainly quantitative, and required the State’s tighter hold of reigns over the entirety of the process, in order to produce as many units as possible, at this point the position is more relaxed. This situation where more than half of the planned units have been built allows us to reflect upon the Housing Program, with its benefits and upsides and also to examine alternatives and look for improvements to its stages and factors. Careful dissection of the process enabled us to detect possible new actors and directions in Ethiopia’s Affordable Housing Program. This paper analyses the achievements of this remarkable housing program and also suggests some positive directions for the future.

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