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Brazil Progressive Low-Income Housing : Alternatives for the Poor

By Brazil Country Management Unit

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Book Id: WPLBN0000043636
Format Type: PDF eBook
File Size: 0.7 MB
Reproduction Date: 2005

Title: Brazil Progressive Low-Income Housing : Alternatives for the Poor  
Author: Brazil Country Management Unit
Language: English
Subject: Economics, Finance & business, World Bank.
Collections: Economics Publications Collection
Publication Date:
Publisher: The World Bank


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Management Unit, B. C. (n.d.). Brazil Progressive Low-Income Housing : Alternatives for the Poor. Retrieved from


Brazil is facing a pressing challenge to help poor households improve their housing conditions and find affordable shelter as part of a coherent poverty reduction strategy. This report provides a framework to discuss the issues facing the low-income housing sector in Brazil and to analyze policy alternatives1. Its message is twofold: First, there is a role for the government to play in the low-income segment of the housing market; indeed, market failures and sheer poverty call for a coordinated and revamped intervention by the public sector. Second, while the needs are staggering, improving the situation for poor households is feasible ? but only if there is a combined strategy to boost demand through resource mobilization and resident savings, and to ease supply constraints at the same time. Underlying these conclusions is the ongoing need to continue capacity-building efforts at all levels of municipal and urban management. -- 2. In February 2001, Brazil?s Congress passed a constitutional amendment guaranteeing the right of all Brazilians to adequate housing. The question now is how the Brazilian public sector can make this a reality while maintaining fiscal discipline. Because housing is a long-lived investment (houses last about 70 years) the sector is still suffering from problems created decades ago ? the debacle of the national housing financing system in the 1960s and long-lasting macroeconomic imbalances, such as hyperinflation until recently, and continuing high interest rates. Today Brazil faces a triple challenge: to address the accumulated housing deficit, to provide for the improvement of the housing stock, and to accommodate an annual population growth of about 3.2 million people. While some of the growth in demand will be satisfied by the market, public intervention is required to address the specific needs of the very poor.


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