“The planning objective for the decade ahead is one million housing units aiming to abate the housing crunch and to prepare for an immigration wave,” said Israeli Interior Minister Eli Yishai at the national housing board’s first session held on Tuesday.
The board, headed by Interior Minister Director General Dr. Shuki Amrani presented the fundamental legislation on the matter, the board’s working procedures and the preparations on part of the Planning Administration for the enactment of the national housing board act passed last August.
Yishai noted the significance of the board’s work, adding “the significance of the housing board’s work is considerable insofar as the social aspects of the country.
The board’s duty is to assist in swamping the market with flats so as to drive housing prices down in Israel.” He explained his statement regarding the construction of one million housing units by saying “it cannot be foretold what the next decade holds in store, nevertheless, we must be prepared for any contingency.”
The board chairman Dr. Shuki Amrani responded that the board is well aware of the reasonability it bears and shall do all in its power to ensure high planning standards and that the public’s interest is upheld.
The National housing board act was passed in the Knesset last August and gained a majority of 57 against 45 objections, despite objections voiced by the social protest leaders. Now the mainstay of the board’s work is to reinstate a large number of suspended housing plans and cut through the red tape impeding implementation thereof.
The board’s first objective is to market about 120,000 housing units within the next couple of years. The board is to report to the government on its progress once every four months.