President of African Federation of Construction Contractors Associations (AFCCA) Hassan Abdelaziz has stated that Africa needs 10 million low-cost housing units annually to meet the increasing population growth.
Abdelaziz said that foreign companies were acquiring these projects to reap huge returns and drain the continent’s bounties, especially as they bring their equipment, labor, and all building materials for projects. Accordingly, the Infrastructure and Energy of the African Union Commission agreed to the union’s request, as a preference rate of 7% was granted to African companies in bids funded by the African Development Bank. In addition to, agree that foreign companies to which the bid is awarded have an African partner from the same country as the project and oblige them to use African labor, locally-made building materials to operate factories and African manpower to provide job opportunities, eradicate poverty and unemployment, achieve economic and societal security, and provide foreign exchange reserves.
This came during the general assembly meeting of AFCCA in Cairo, in the presence of the heads of construction federations from sixteen African and Arab countries, namely Zimbabwe, Chad, Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Senegal, Ethiopia, Guinea, Côte d’Ivoire, Tanzania, Morocco, Libya, Algeria, and Egypt, Tunisia, and Somalia.
Abdelaziz added that major alliances and blocs have been established between Egyptian and African contracting companies to develop many major projects in Africa, highlighting the need to rehabilitate African contracting companies. Moreover, develop their technical capabilities and pay attention to technical training so that they can carry out sustainable construction, green buildings and their design specifications, taking into account climate changes.
He pointed out that Africa badly needs new and renewable energy projects, road projects, and then housing projects.