13th RHP Steering Committee confirms sustained progress and Donor support for the Regional Housing Programme

Paris, 27 November 2018 – The 13th meeting of the Steering Committee of the Regional Housing Programme (RHP) and the 17th meeting of the RHP Fund Assembly of Donors took place on 27 November 2018 at the CEB’s premises in Paris.

The RHP governance bodies convened to take stock of RHP’s progress and follow up on the strategy to ensure sustainable impact and a successful completion of the RHP in 2021. Approximately 4 300 vulnerable families will have entered into their new RHP financed homes by end 2018.  This figure will almost triple by the end of the Programme in 2021. Besides houses of high technical standards delivered to their beneficiaries, in 2019 the Programme will continue striving for increased sustainability and visibility.

As a token of the Donors’ support of the Programme and in acknowledgement of its important humanitarian contribution and visible impact today, the Government of Germany announced a fresh contribution of EUR 1.5 million to the RHP Fund, bringing its total contribution to the Programme to EUR 9 million. Another EUR 39.5 million are expected to be contributed by the European Union in the days following the RHP Steering Committee. This last contribution will also fulfil the overall EU pledge to the RHP and will bring the financial support of the EU to EUR 234 million in total. Spain also increased its contribution to the RHP and is now providing over EUR 200 000 for technical assistance.

CEB’s Governor Rolf Wenzel underlined the important message these contributions carry, as they resonate the strong and continuous commitment of the Donors to the RHP cause. He called upon all stakeholders to maintain good progress so that the RHP could be completed by the end of 2021, and to reflect on the legacy that the RHP can leave to future projects.

On behalf of the European Commission, the main RHP Donor, Colin Wolfe, Head of Unit for Western Balkans Regional Cooperation in DG NEAR, highlighted the reconciliatory and cooperation -inductive character of the RHP, at a time when regional and interstate cooperation in Europe is challenged. He evoked the new impetus of the enlargement agenda and called for a concerted effort to showcase the impact of the RHP in the wider EU and global public.

Semiha Borovac, Minister of Human Rights and Refugees of Bosnia and Herzegovina, stated: “Besides the houses delivered to vulnerable families, the RHP has helped the Partner Countries establish enduring friendships that can foster continuous cooperation.”

Veljko Odalovic, General Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Serbia, confirmed Serbia’s full dedication to the common RHP objective and echoed other speakers in his belief that the RHP could serve as an example for the resolution of similar protracted refugee situations in the region and beyond.

UNHCR and OSCE representatives commended the RHP Partner Countries for their efforts, confirmed that the beneficiary selection in RHP is advancing well and reiterated the continuous engagement of the two organisations in the RHP joint effort.

The Assembly of Donors unanimously elected Switzerland as the Co-chair of the RHP Fund Assembly of Donors and the RHP Steering Committee for the year 2019.

Key RHP figures (as at 27 November 2018):

Pledged to the RHP: € 285 million
Committed to the RHP Fund: € 206 million
Paid into the RHP Fund: € 171 million
Grants approved: € 230 million
Grants disbursed: € 120 million

 RHP info desk:  Secretariat of the Regional Housing Programme

  • 29 Nov, 2018
  • Aleksandra

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