The Maharashtra government is planning to take a closer look at the low-cost housing models of Brazil and Shanghai in China to see if any of the elements can be replicated in the state. It has set a target of creating 19 lakh affordable houses in the state in five years.
The chief minister held bilateral discussions with representatives from Brazil as well as China on the sidelines of the three-day BRICS cities conclave, organised by private thinktank Mumbai First, along with the Union and state governments. The conclave ended Saturday in Mumbai.
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Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said, “Mumbai is struggling with urbanisation and availability of affordable housing. We are very keen on studying models of partner countries such as Brazil’s ‘minha Casa, minha vida’ (my house, my life) and the Shanghai model.”
Brazil’s ‘Minha casa, minha vida’ was also discussed in a special session on affordable housing as part of the BRICS conclave. It was started in 2009. The Brazilian administration had pledged more than a million single-family homes to low-income families through various schemes. The model, however, does not provide free housing unlike Mumbai’s slum rehabilitation scheme and is designed for working class families with a range of benefits, determined as per their needs. The benefits include 25 per cent down payment to buyers, subsidised interest rates on mortgages and 100 per cent financing, among others.
The Shanghai model is based on four approaches – low-rental housing for extremely poor families who otherwise find it difficult to be included in the formal housing sector, public rental housing for the working population with stable incomes, shared ownership housing with the government, and housing for those who need to be relocated from their old rickety buildings.
Fadnavis said, “The bilateral discussions have opened new doors for cooperation in varied fields.” He added that Mumbai also had a lot to learn from cities in South Africa that have had effectively used urban planning and inclusiveness of society to combat threats to safety and security as well as residents’ engagement model followed by Russia’s St Petersburg.