The Minister for Works and Housing of Ghana, Francis Asenso-Boakye, has in a statement at the second session of the Assembly of the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) in Nairobi, Kenya affirm the country’s commitment to sustainable urban development in order to address housing challenges faced by the country.
Hon. Asenso-Boakye highlighted that, as the host country of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), the government of Ghana recognises the strong linkage between sustainable urban development and regional economic integration.
He therefore acknowledged the country’s engagements with the UN-Habitat on various critical issues, including climate change adaptation and the impact of rapid urbanization on communities, cities, and economies as crucial.
Highlighting the commitment to achieving Sustainable Development Goal 11 and the principles of the New Urban Agenda, Mr. Asenso-Boakye noted the findings of the Ghana Population and Housing Census in 2021.
“The census revealed progress in the housing sector, with a decrease in the estimated housing deficit from approximately 2 million units to 1.8 million units”, he indicated.
He however acknowledged the substantial disparity in addressing the housing requirements of the low-to-middle income bracket, and urged member-states to find pragmatic steps in addressing them.
He said; “to bridge this gap, the Ghanaian government has committed to adopting a new approach to housing developments in the country, by collaborating with private sector partners in providing safe, secure, decent and affordable housing to the populace.”
Expressing gratitude for the funding and technical support received from UN-Habitat and its partners, Minister Asenso-Boakye highlighted their assistance in controlling the spread of COVID-19, reviewing Ghana’s National Urban Policy, and preparing the Slum Upgrading Strategy.
The minister in his concluding remarks reaffirmed Ghana’s firm commitment to collaborating with UN-Habitat and its partners in adopting accelerated and innovative strategies to achieve the objectives outlined in the New Urban Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals while emphasising the need for increased cooperation in the face of current global crises.
Ghana’s participation in the UN-Habitat Assembly signifies its determination to address housing challenges, promote sustainable urban development, and contribute to the global efforts in creating inclusive and resilient cities for all.
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