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President announces steel, cement, financial stimulus for home builders

Last Updated on Friday, 22 July 2022, 22:34 by Denis Chabrol

President Irfaan Ali at the opening of the 2022 International Building Expo

President Irfaan Ali on Friday night announced free ‘steel and cement’ packages as well as no down-payment and reduced interest rates to persons who would like to build their own homes.

He told the opening of the 2022 International Building Expo that persons who would like to construct a house for GY$6 million and lower, the government “will support home ownership” by “giving every single family in the category of affordable homes”  steel and one sling of cement to build their foundations.

Dr Ali also said that for every other category of home ownership such as young professionals and the middle income category ranging from GY$6.01 million to GY$25 million would receive two slings of cement.

According to the Guyanese leader the package of measures are “in order to continue he aggression in the housing sector and in order to make hone ownership more affordable and in order to lift more Guyanese out of poverty and in order to increase the net worth of every single Guyanese.”

The President lauded Demerara Bank, Republic Bank, Guyana Bank for Trade and Industry, Bank of Baroda, Citizens Bank and Scotiabank have agreed that would-be borrowers would not have to first produce a percentage requirement for loans below GY$6 million because of “the policy by this government.” “Once you qualify through the joint window system, the government comes in with you , now the commercial banks are with you,” he said.

The banks, he said, have agreed to reduce interest rates for housing and buildings up to GY$8 million to 3.8 percent. “This is coming at ta tine when the world is increasing interest rates.  These are direct responses to polices of the government,” he said.

Dr Ali sought to assure attendees as well as other Guyanese that they would not be discriminated against regardless of their political persuasion. “Whether your political views are aligned with the government or not, you have a seat in that (One Guyana) vehicle. I urge you (to) ignore anyone who tells you not to take that seat. Claim your seat in this vehicle, embrace the prosperity that will come your way,”: he said.

The President said official figures show that the loans to households increased by 13 percent of the total loans which grow by 20 percent to GY$310 billion in less than two years. He added hat mortgages grew by GY$16 billion or 21 percent, and total lending to the construction centre was GY$15.6 billion or 50 percent growth since his party was declared winner