Thursday, 04 August 2016 03:00

Discussion on financial solutions for supporting IDPs and vulnerable households in informal settlements and IDP areas

On 3 August 2016, the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) Iraq organized a national workshop in Baghdad, Iraq, with over 25 participants from the Iraqi Ministry of Planning, Ministry of Housing, Construction, Municipalities and Public Works, Ammanat Baghdad and Shoura Council under the programme implemented by UN-Habitat with generous funding from the United States Department of State Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration titled “National Programme for Rehabilitation and Regularization of Informal Settlements/IDPs Areas in Iraq.”

 

In 2015, the Iraqi Council of Ministers endorsed a policy roadmap developed under the “National Programme for Rehabilitation and Regularization of Informal Settlements/IDPs Areas in Iraq,” aiming to enable internally displaced and vulnerable Iraqi households living in informal settlements/IDP areas to have increased access to affordable housing with security of tenure and basic services. The objective of the workshop was to discuss the structure of the Informal Settlement Development Fund, which was decided to be established by the policy roadmap.

The fund utilizes a number of sources, including loans, donations, and the land sharing mechanism. Land sharing mechanism redevelops informal settlements to allow space not only for social housing but also for private housing as well as commercial and governmental uses of land. This land sharing approach will enable communities to retain livelihoods and community cohesion, and allow profitable ventures to offset investment costs of social housing for the most vulnerable as initial capital investment on social housing is reimbursed through the sale of commercial land.

Dr. Mahdi Al-Alaq, the General Secretary of the Council of Ministers and Head of Steering Committee of “National Programme for Rehabilitation and Regularization of Informal Settlements/IDPs Areas in Iraq,” opened the workshop by reiterating the strong support of the Council of Ministers to this project. He commented that the provision of safe living environment for all will be one of the top priorities for the Government of Iraq as it engages in its new poverty reduction strategy.

Ms. Yuko Otsuki, Deputy Representative of UN-Habitat Iraq, expressed appreciation for continuous support provided by the Ministry of Planning as well as the Steering Committee headed by Dr. Mahdi Al-Alaq for implementation of the programme, and emphasized the importance of the project and the Informal Settlement Development Fund in addressing challenges faced by IDPs and vulnerable people residing in informal settlements.

Ms. Najla Ali Murad, Director General of Poverty Reduction Strategy of the Ministry of Planning, mentioned that the number of informal settlements in Iraq has doubled since 2013, and commented that the Informal Settlement Development Fund should be utilized to attract funds from wider range of sources, including private sector, given the financial crisis the Government is going through.

 

For further information, please contact:

Alan Miran

Media Outreach Assistant, UN-Habitat

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Mobile: + 964 750 342 7036

Additional Info

  • Agency: UN-HABITAT
Last modified on Tuesday, 13 September 2016 18:20

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