Cemex announces developments in affordable housing initiative

Cemex announces developments in affordable housing initiative
Published: 14 October 2011

Cemex announced today a number of developments in the progress of its affordable housing initiative, a project that was undertaken to help provide quality concrete housing to low-income families in developing countries.

“Our goal is to help support people as they strive to provide homes and shelter for their families. We do this by not only helping to supply these new homeowners with affordable and reliable products, but also to help them find the right financial solutions to secure quality housing,” said Juan Luis Alfiero, leader of the affordable housing initiative. “The key to the future of this initiative will be the support of other institutions and partners to create an integrated and collaborative approach to ensuring the future of housing and infrastructure in developing countries”.

The housing initiative, which was launched in 2010, is defined by a two-tiered approach of providing affordable quality building solutions while also identifying adequate financial solutions to meet each family’s needs. As part of the initiative, Cemex housing experts have developed several prototypes of concrete houses for various types of urban and rural communities. These prototypes have been adapted to local usage and customs in different regions of developing countries. The cost of building these houses is under US$10,000 including finishes, fixtures, and equipment.

Cemex is also working with various institutions to obtain suitable financial product fees and payment terms for the beneficiaries. As of today, Cemex has implemented 30 housing projects under this initiative in coordination with third-party developers in five countries and the expectation is to have approximately 5,000 homes built by the end of 2011. Examples of progress to date include:

• In Nuevo Leon, a northern Mexican state that was one of the most affected by flooding during hurricane Alex in 2010, we launched a program to build 239 concrete houses with one of our prototypes in the municipality of Anahuac and 103 homes in the municipality of Monterrey.

• In Southern Mexico, we launched a similar 394-house project in the state of Campeche. This is a pilot project of a new financial scheme by SHF, a Mexican Housing Development Bank, called the “Assisted Self-Construction Program” in which a loan is granted to the beneficiary by a local financial institution.

• In Costa Rica, a project named “La Campiña” that consists of building 183 concrete houses is currently in progress.

• In Guatemala, a 32-home building project named “Torres Petapa”.

• In Nicaragua, the “San Rafael” project consists of 143 42-square-meter houses built through the “tilt-up” system.

• In Panama, we are working on a 400-house project called “Villas del Lago”.

The worldwide housing deficit has an estimated 1.1 billion people in urban areas alone living in inadequate housing. Mitigating the deficit is a challenge that requires joint action between governments, financial institutions, NGOs, and private enterprises to help build communities from the ground up.

Cemex has already collaborated with a number of important international, federal, state and local organizations to ensure such affordable housing including Ashoka Housing for All, the International Finance Corporation, the Mexican National Housing Commission (CONAVI), the Costa Rica Housing Ministry and the Costa Rica-Canada Foundation, the Nicaraguan Housing and Urban Institute (INVUR), the General Bank of Panama, the Nuevo Leon and Campeche Housing Institutes in Mexico, among others. With the support of these institutions, Cemex expects to contribute to improve living conditions of families living in inadequate and inhumane conditions.