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A National Housing Policy for Afghanistan

A National Housing Policy for Afghanistan

Apr 09, 2018 - 15:06

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 April 2018- Afghanistaninfo-icon’s rapid urban transformations present an important opportunity for development, job creation and peace-building. A third of its urban population is already living in cities and by 2060, more than half of the population is estimated to reside in urban areas. Providing adequate housing for all is one of the key priorities of the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan (GOIRA).

The Ministry of Urban Development and Housing (MUDH) is currently developing its first National Housing Policy as an important step towards improving the lives of millions of Afghans. The development of such a policy is currently enshrined in the Afghanistan National Urban Priority Programme (U-NPP) for the period 2016-2025. The Policy will be complemented with a strategy for its implementation.

An analysis of the housing supply in the country reveals that it is still insufficient and does not address the basic housing needs for the population. According to UN-Habitat’sNational Housing Profile – released in 2017, formal housing supply only meets only 5-10 per cent of the total housing demand, and it is unaffordable for 90-95 per cent of the population.

UN-Habitat, the UN lead agency on sustainable urban development, is pleased to support the Afghan government in developing the National Housing Policy in close coordination with national and local authorities, civil societyinfo-icon and private sector in a participatory and inclusive process.

Providing adequate housing for all is a human right enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development and in the New Urban Agenda, the UN roadmap for sustainable development adopted in Quito in October 2016. The New Urban Agenda recommends national governments to promote national, subnational and local housing policiesthat support the progressive realization of the right toadequate housing for all as a component of the right to an adequate standard of living (art. 31). In Agenda 2030, the UN framework to achieve sustainable development, housing is also placed in a strategic position. “By 2030, ensure access for all to adequate, safe and affordable housing and basic services, and upgrade slums”. We welcome Afghanistan’s commitment to implement the New Urban Agenda and SDG11.

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