- Wealthy Gulf countries are witnessing a strong need for affordable and social housing.
- Gulf governments want to see stronger private sector involvement.
Oil-rich Gulf countries and their need for affordable and social housing may sound an unlikely topic, particularly with most headlines focusing on the petroleum industry, wealth and excess.
But there there is a dire need for affordable housing within the region.
In fact, waiting lists for affordable housing for middle-income households in Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) nations are long, according to Sassan Hatam, a partner at Roland Berger's Middle East offices who presented statistics on housing at the Gateway Gulf investment forum in Bahrain on Wednesday.
That's not to say the needs are the same across the GCC, however, with 60,000 "units" on the waiting list in Bahrain, compared to, for example, 100,000 on the waiting list in Kuwait. Similarly, the notion of "affordable rents" differs around the GCC.
In Bahrain, an affordable ren