Brian Hayes MEP today said that a programme funded by the European Investment Bank (EIB) on Social Housing in Ireland will be of significant benefit to Dublin as the city battles with housing shortages.
“The EIB has appraised an Irish Social Housing Programme and intends to provide €150 million of funds, out of a total of €300 million, which will involve retrofitting and restoring of existing rental housing as well as the construction of new, additional, housing units,” said Mr. Hayes.
“Dublin is currently experiencing a serious housing shortage and there is a low level of new building work coming on stream which is driving prices up. This programme will hugely benefit Dublin by providing a much-needed boost towards improving the supply of adequate and affordable housing.”
The EIB will work with the Housing Finance Agency (HFA) to put this programme in place and it will last for the period of 2014 – 2017. The programme is awaiting approval from the EIB’s Board of Directors and it is expected that a decision will be taken by the end of October.
“The EIB have confirmed that the majority of the work will be done in Dublin and they expect the programme to provide approximately 2,400 social housing units. Many people have been on social housing waiting lists for several years in Dublin, we need to use resources from the European Investment Bank in the best way possible to deliver long-term housing to those who need it most,” added MEP Hayes.
“This is the EIB’s first social housing programme in Ireland but they are also in the early stages of advising Irish authorities on a possible financing model for Ireland using experiences from elsewhere in Europe.”
“The EIB has been lending for social housing purposes for several years and has helped to develop successful social housing models in countries such as the UK and Netherlands. Importantly, the Government has recently prioritised the social housing issue. However, it is vital that we ensure that the regulatory environment is right to attract private sector investment in social housing,” concluded Mr. Hayes.