Kolesnikov: Ukraine could order first social housing project from Finish specialists

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Aug. 28, 2012, 1:52 p.m. | Ukraine — by Interfax-Ukraine

Ukraine could order the design of its first social housing project from Finland, Vice Premier and Infrastructure Minister Borys Kolesnikov (L) has said.

HELSINKI – Ukraine could order the design of its first social housing project from Finland, Vice Premier and Infrastructure Minister Borys Kolesnikov has said.

"I think that the first project should be ordered in Finland. Specifically, the project should be ordered in order to involve architects who will train our young people who are studying in institutes or working in design studios," he told reporters on Tuesday, Aug.28, during a visit of the Ukrainian delegation to Finland to study experience of construction of affordable housing in the country.

The first social housing projects could be launched in Kyiv, Kharkiv, Odesa, Dnipropetrovsk, Donetsk an Zaporizhia, he added.

He said that the scheme for buying social apartments should be simple and clear.

"You select an apartment, go to a bank, submit documents on income and pay from 10% to 20% [of the apartment cost] and in the evening you obtain the keys to the apartment. If it happens like this, it will be in great demand," he said.

The vice premier said that the cost of an apartment with decoration should be up to Hr 6,000 per square meter.

Kolesnikov said that the state should support private investors-constructors in the purchase of equipment for the production of high-quality modern ferroconcrete structures.

"The state could finance interest rates on credits, and the state will pay for installing networks, while local councils allocate land plots free of charge so each Ukrainian can afford an apartment, and then there will be competition," he said.

Commenting on the chances of foreign construction companies entering the Ukrainian market, Kolesnikov said that it is likely that this will affect the expensive elite housing sector.

"Finnish companies can come to us, and we'll be glad, but I think that there are enough consulting firms to teach our constructors how to do this," he said.

He said that first apartments under the Affordable Housing program in Ukraine could be ready in October-November 2013.

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