St Vincent PM impressed with Guyana’s affordable housing programme

St Vincent and the Grenadines Prime Minister, Dr Ralph Gonsalves has described the government’s affordable housing programme as ‘impressive’, noting that it is an excellent initiative.

Dr Gonsalves visited the low-income homes and DurvaVilla units in Great Diamond, East Bank Demerara. Housing and Water Minister, Collin Croal led the delegation along with Local Government and Regional Development Minister, Nigel Dharamlall.  

St Vincent and the Grenadines Prime Minister, Dr Ralph Gonsalves, Housing and Water Minister, Collin Croal, Local Government and Regional Development Minister, Nigel Dharamlall and Director of Projects of the Central Housing and Planning Authority, Omar Narine

“I was very impressed with the project in which the Government of Guyana is involved in building low-income houses. I think it’s an excellent initiative by President Ali and his government, to build so many houses, he tells me that the target is 25,000 within a particular time frame. This is incredible,” Dr Gonsalves told the Department of Public Information.

The low-income concrete units cost $5.5 million each, including the land.  It measures 600 square feet and consists of two bedrooms, a living room, a washroom area and other amenities.

St Vincent and the Grenadines Prime Minister, Dr Ralph Gonsalves, Housing and Water Minister, Collin Croal and Local Government and Regional Development Minister, Nigel Dharamlall during the tour of the low-income homes in Great Diamond

As part of its national housing programme, the government is also constructing moderate and middle-income units and young professional homes.

The St Vincent prime minister highlighted that the cost of the unit is one of the best in the region.

St Vincent and the Grenadines Prime Minister, Dr Ralph Gonsalves, Housing and Water Minister, Collin Croal and Local Government and Regional Development Minister, Nigel Dharamlall at the DuraVilla unit

“That is fantastic value for money, clearly there is a heavy government subsidy there.  

“We have been engaged in St. Vincent and Grenadines since 2001, my government with low income and low and middle-income houses. In fact, we have a category of those called no- income houses and these prices, certainly better than ours,” he related.

The team also visited the DuraVilla’s housing operations at Land of Canaan, where all modular components of the homes are manufactured.

An aerial view of the low-income housing units in Great Diamond

He revealed that his government will purchase 15 of the homes from the local company as part of the island’s rebuilding efforts after the volcano eruption in 2021.

Arrangements are being made to deliver the homes by March this year.

Dr Gonsalves is currently in Guyana on a four-day state visit.

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