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Fiji Time: 11:47 PM on Friday 22 August

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Cheaper homes

Nasik Swami
Saturday, November 24, 2012

THE government will continue to provide affordable housing to those Fijians who need it.

In his 2013 National Budget address, Prime Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama said: "We will continue our program to provide debt relief for those who are unable to meet their obligation to the Housing Authority."

"Hundreds of families are being relieved of the worry of having a mortgage debt they cannot afford to pay," he added.

Commodore Bainimarama said through the social housing policy implemented by the Housing Authority, about 200 families would finally have dwellings they could call their own after their loans were written-off.

"We are setting aside another $1million for this program in 2013."

The government also allocated $600,000 as a grant to the Housing Assistance and Relief Trust which will cover the construction of new HART homes and maintenance of existing ones.

"We will also provide $1million to the Public Rental Board as rental subsidy for low-income tenants."

Commodore Bainimarama said many Fijians had grown impatient with the formal system for acquiring housing and have created informal settlements.

"These settlements can create unsafe conditions for residents and can cause chaos in urban and rural areas, but they are home to many people who have no other alternative."

A sum of $1m was allocated to address the growth of informal or squatter settlements and improve the overall quality of housing in 2013.


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