Bangladesh’s Experience with Low-income Housing Finance

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Date Published 2009
Primary Author Mohd. Shamsul Haque
Other Authors
Theme Housing Finance Subsidies
Country Bangladesh


Bangladesh is a densely populated country and has one of the lowest land-person ratios in the world. In Bangladesh, a large portion of land is covered with rivers and lakes resulting in a much higher population density of 1,198 Persons/Sq. KM; and a high population growth rate in urban areas (4.5 percent), the standard of shelter is correspondingly low. Approximately 77 percent of urban dwellings and over 98 percent of rural dwellings are not permanent. Overcrowding and minimal or no infrastructure support services are further problems. The situation has not improved significantly over the past decade. According to numerous Bangladesh agencies, the plight of low-income households has worsened in recent years, particularly in relation to the provision of basic housing. The situation is further aggravating every year through an irrevocable reduction of per capita share of land for housing. Acknowledging the importance, housing is one of the five basic needs incorporated in the constitution of Bangladesh, compelled Government constitutionally to play a vital role in securing housing rights. Government alone cannot provide house to all and realizing this, they decided to share the task of providing safe decent places to live with NGOs, to make these people a productive resource. Many NGOs are promoting low cost safe housing schemes through skills enhancement, networking, technical assistance, advocacy, credit,and access to government land.

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