Former US envoy to build 5,000 homes in Tanzania

Once US Ambassador to Tanzania Charles StithEnterprise Homes Tanzania, a joint venture headed by once US Ambassador to Tanzania Charles Stith, plans to build 5,000 homes in major urban centres across Tanzania

By Pastory Nguvu

Enterprise Homes Tanzania, a joint venture involving the Massachusetts-based (US) Enterprises Homes LLC Andover and Dar es Salaam’s Kays Hygiene Products Limited and Serengeti Capital Limited, plans to build 5,000 homes in major urban centres across Tanzania.

Charles Stith, once US Ambassador to Tanzania, said in Dar es Salaam yesterday that the project is expected to start with Dar es Salaam Region and then gradually roll out to other regions.


Stith who is the Chairman of Enterprises Homes said the initiative would be financed partly by the US Overseas Private Investment Co-operation (OPIC) with a commitment of 12.4m USD in political risk insurance received in September 2006 and 20m USD in mortgage money that has been requested.


According to the envoy, the first phase of the project will start in June with the construction of 45 homes at Kunduchi in northern Dar es Salaam.


`It will be extended to other sites close to Kinzudi and rolled out to upcountry regions, among them Mwanza and Arusha,` Stith explained.


Enterprises Homes LLC president Kyle Mcknney said the project`s goal is to build 5,000 quality homes by 2012 and bring in American style mortgage finance to help Tanzanians live in their own homes immediately.


Each residential cluster neighbourhood would consist of single-family homes, `all complete with photovoltaic electrical equipment to enable homebuyers to have an alternative source of power in the event of power blackouts`.


The development would also include the installation of infrastructure such as roads and utilities, observed Stith, adding: `The mortgage financing, which has an amortisation period of 15 years, make the monthly payment affordable to a broader segment of the work force.


Meanwhile, the design of these homes will be unique and distinguished.`


He said the project`s most distinct feature was that it would provide long-range mortgage financing that would make home ownership available to more Tanzanians`.


He was optimistic that the option, which he saw revolutionising home ownership in Tanzania, would help Tanzania overcome the critical shortage of affordable housing in the country. However, he would not give specific figures on the cost of the houses to be put up.


OPIC, the project`s main sponsor, is a US government agency whose major role is to assist American companies investing overseas.


Source: Guardian

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