Mérida, 5th January 2012 (Venezuelanalysis.com) – 144,061 homes were constructed during 2011 as part of the Venezuelan government’s mass house building program, the Great Housing Mission (GMV), representing 96% of the 150,000 construction goal for that year.
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez announced the figures during an event in Barinas State in the South-West of Venezuela last Saturday, where 4,537 homes were handed over to families.
Chavez highlighted the effort made by the government to meet the housing needs of the Venezuelan people, stating “the advance of this project is truly impressive, I congratulate all the workers that are here making this possible”.
The Venezuelan president also emphasised that the new Palma Sola Urban Project in Barinas, to which 2,624 families received keys to their new homes last week, was built with the assistance of the Chinese Citec Group, which he held as evidence of the benefits of growing Sino-Venezuelan bilateral cooperation.
Adan Chavez, governor of Barinas state and Hugo Chavez’s brother, explained the consultative process by which it was decided which families should obtain the newly built homes; with communal councils checking the housing program’s register and then voting on which families were in most need of a new home.
The GMV was launched in April 2011 to address Venezuelan’s long-term shortage of decent affordable housing. Following a register of those requiring a new house completed in October 2011, the program’s aim is to construct 2.7 million homes by 2019.
The construction aim for 2011 was 150,000 new homes. For 2012 it is 200,000, and then 300,000 each year thereafter.
Of the 133,000 homes built in 2011 before the final construction figures were announced, 47% were built with the assistance of organised communities, according to Petroleum and Mining Minister Rafael Ramirez.
Communities are involved in the GMV through programmes such as the Integral Transformation of the Environment (TIH) and the Substitution of Shanties for Houses (Suvi).
Within the TIH, the government agency, the Foundation for the Development of Popular Power, (Fundacomunal) provides materials and technical support to communities to construct or improve housing and to undertake community works.
Meanwhile the Suvi program, also backed by Fundacomunal, provides cooperatives and community organisations with support to construct new houses for families living in shanty housing.