Kenya on Thursday said that it will be seeking partnerships with China in order to develop low cost housing.
Ministry of Land, Housing and Urban Development Permanent Secretary Professor Paul Mwangi told Xinhua in Nairobi that China has been able to build a large scale high quality and affordable houses targeted at the low income earners.
"Kenya is always head hunting for international partners that have appropriate building technology in the development of low cost houses," Mwangi said.
He said that Kenya has had partnerships with China in the housing sector since 2008, adding, "We are hoping to escalate the partnership so as to increase the supply of affordable houses in Kenya."
Mwangi noted that the government has a mandate of establishing social housing units as the private sector tends to build houses for high income earners and the middle class.
A recent survey by the ministry of housing indicates that annual demand for new houses stands at close to 250,000 units most of which in the low income segment.
Some of the key reasons for the high cost of houses is the rising cost of land in major urban areas as well as high cost of credit.
"So we need to leverage on the use of technology in order to lower the cost of houses," Mwangi said.
The government will encourage Chinese firms to establish in Kenyan factories the manufacture components that are used for low cost housing.
Mwangi added that the Chinese have also developed innovative models for sustainable housing such as waste recycling plant to convert sewerage into power.
"This promotes environmental conservation by reducing the carbon footprint of the houses," the PS said.