2010 threatening housing delivery

WORRIED: Nomvula Mokonyane. Pic. Elvis Ntombela. 20/09/06. © Sunday World.
WORRIED: Nomvula Mokonyane. Pic. Elvis Ntombela. 20/09/06. © Sunday World.

Simon Nare

Simon Nare

The 2010 Soccer World Cup is expected to pump billions of rands into the country, but there are fears that it might also slow the construction of low-cost housing.

The fear is that the demand for building materials for World Cup stadiums and other infrastructure will be so huge that housing will have to do without.

Now the Gauteng Housing Department is considering setting up building-material warehouses in anticipation of the high demand.

"Competition for building materials is gaining momentum in the building industry. Small and medium developers contracted to deliver low-cost housing are concerned that the country might run out of building stock if the government fails to intervene," said the Housing Department.

This emerged during a housing stakeholders' workshop at Nasrec, Johannesburg, at which a departmental performance plan for the 2007-08 financial year was presented.

Housing MEC Nomvula Mokonyane said the department was investigating ways of protecting small and medium-sized developers from competition for building materials.

"Gauteng faces unique challenges so we are looking at warehousing as an option," Mokonyane said.

Already the prices of cement, steel and wood have shot up.

Housing Department spokesman Mongezi Mnyani said emerging contractors would be the worst hit by the competition for building materials.

"Most of these contractors are having cash-flow problems. So we will procure the materials for them and pay them only for their labour."