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Italian Economic Diplomacy 14 March: latest news from around the world

Cameroon: agreement signed to fund Pizzarotti Group’s social housing project

The funding agreement between the Government of Cameroon and Banca Intesa Sanpaolo for the ‘social housing’ project of the Pizzarotti Group has now been signed. This is the first action of the kind in the urbanisation and social housing sector, which responds to a severe lack of housing and at the same time represents an industrialistion intervention that seeks to set up an industrial base for the onsite production of construction materials and pre-fabricated lodgings. The success story of this Italian enterprise has been possible thanks to the continuous support given by the Italian Embassy in Yaounde. The aim of the project, besides the construction of programmed housing units, is to develop a local construction industry. It sets up plants for the production of building material and for the integration of Cameroonian small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the industry and in the implementation of the works. The action foresees also the technical assistance to the public institutions involved in the implementation of the various stages of the project. The first stage involves the planning and the study of the entire programme, the creation of an industrial base over a 20-hectare surface area, the construction of the first 1000 lodgings, the technical assistance to the relevant governmental agencies and the re-styling of the SMEs involved. The industrial base and the first batch of houses will be set up in Mbankomo, a densely populated area with a high percentage of youth and a high rate of unemployment and underemployment. The lodgings will make up a totally new neighbourhood with roads, public and social services (schools, clinics, religious buildings, administrative offices, sports facilities, and recreational and commercial facilities). The first stage is estimated to generate approximately 1000 direct jobs, followed by the activities related to the purchase of part of the materials available on site and by subcontracting to third parties. The production lines for the industrial plants and other materials will be imported from Italy. The funding granted by Banca Intesa, with the support of the Italian export trade agency (SACE) amounts to 114 billion francs (CFA) – slightly over 170 million euros. In the upcoming days the construction contract will be signed, which will reveal the timetable for carrying out the works.


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