NICOSIA, 19-Jun-2017 — /EuropaWire/ — The Council of Europe Development Bank (CEB) approved a € 29 million loan to support social housing in Malta. The project will benefit socio-economically disadvantaged groups by providing them with access to affordable housing.
As housing prices in Malta have almost doubled since 2000, growing at a much faster pace than the average income, there is a shortage of affordable housing. This has put enormous pressure on low-income families, who cannot afford to buy or rent decent housing. At the same time, available subsidised rental housing has become more and more scarce in the past fifteen years.
The project financed by the CEB is expected to make an important contribution to a government-supported housing scheme implemented by Malita, a specialised government-owned company. CEB funds will make possible the supply of 680 social housing units, which will provide a housing solution to the most vulnerable segments of the Maltese population, including low-income families, persons with disabilities and homeless persons.
The new and renovated dwellings will be built to modern, energy-efficient standards, so they are expected to have significant environmental benefits in addition to the positive socio-cultural impact of the project as a whole.
Commenting on the approval of the loan, CEB Governor Wenzel said: “Access to decent housing is not only a fundamental human right but it can also help to avoid social exclusion and its damaging effects on social cohesion. This is why the CEB attaches particular importance to the financing of social housing projects in its member countries. I am very pleased that some of the most vulnerable population groups in Malta will benefit from this project, and I look forward to further strengthening the cooperation between the Bank and Malta, a long-standing CEB member.”
Set up in 1956, the CEB (Council of Europe Development Bank) has 41 member states. Twenty-two Central, Eastern and South Eastern European countries, forming the Bank’s target countries, are listed among the member states. As a major instrument of the policy of solidarity in Europe, the Bank finances social projects by making available resources raised in conditions reflecting the quality of its rating (Aa1 with Moody’s, outlook stable, AA+ with Standard & Poor’s, outlook stable and AA+ with Fitch Ratings, outlook stable). It thus grants loans to its member states, and to financial institutions and local authorities in its member states for the financing of projects in the social sector, in accordance with its Articles of Agreement.
SOURCE: The Council of Europe Development Bank (CEB)