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Minister Zuraida Kamaruddin said the construction of the first batch of 100,000 homes would begin this year. Pic by NSTP/RAMDZAN MASIAM

GEORGE TOWN: The Housing and Local Government Ministry will build a million units of affordable homes within the next 10 years.

Minister Zuraida Kamaruddin said the construction of the first batch of 100,000 homes would begin this year.

“The ministry will coordinate all housing projects under Syarikat Perumahan Negara Bhd,” she said after launching the Penang Property Expo 2019 at SPICE Arena, here, today.

“This is part of the government’s efforts to help more people, especially low-income earners, to own homes.”

Zuraida said all categories of affordable homes would be built, including those for the bottom 40 (B40) per cent income group.

She said the locations and units of homes to be built in each state would be decided in the near future after discussions with the relevant parties.

Zuraida said property expos were the best platforms for the people to purchase homes.

“Through such expos, they can obtain information on projects and make comparisons among developers,” she said.

“In Penang, I found that the development spaces are getting dense. I support the Penang government’s efforts to focus development in Seberang Prai,” she said, stressing that this was in line with the state government’s mission to turn Seberang Prai into the future of Penang.

“As such, we can now see more development centred in Batu Kawan and surrounding areas.

“Penang has excellent logistics facilities, including two bridges connecting the mainland to the island.

“It may also have an undersea tunnel soon.”

Zuraida said there were claims that the robust development of affordable homes annually would result in an oversupply of such homes.

“Rest assured the ministry, the Real Estate and Housing Developers Association and developers have discussed organising more property expos to sell such houses.

“We are also in discussions with several financial institutions to offer special initiatives to make it easier for the B40 group to own homes, including rent and sell and bank schemes,” she said.

Also present was Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow.

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