Vinares is an achievement of the current gov't: Planning Minister

Planning Minister Mohamed Aslam has said that Vinares flats built in Hulhumale Phase II are an achievement of the current government. Aslam made the statement while speaking at a ceremony held Monday to hand over 1,344 flats developed by China's CMEC Group to the Housing Development Corporation (HDC).

Aslam said the Vinares project was launched on August 25, 2009, when he was the Housing Minister during former President Mohamed Nasheed's administration. He said the project was carried out in three phases and that he signed the project agreements to develop 1,000 housing units in Hulhumale', 796 housing units in Male' and Hulhumale', and 704 housing units in the southern provinces.

The minister said the Vinares flats in Hulhumale were constructed under the project's third phase. Although a past government signed the project agreement, the project was conceived during an MDP government.

"I have the right to claim that these [Vinares] flats are an achievement of the government's efforts during this term," he said.

Aslam said that although the construction of the housing units under the Vinares project started during the previous government, it was in its initial stage when the current administration took over. At the time, the foundation work of the buildings had not started, he said. The minister added that he was very proud to have had the pleasure of starting and completing the Vinares project.

"This [the Vinares flat project] started with our full participation. It was just starting at the beginning of our government. I am happy and very proud to have the opportunity to complete this," Aslam said.

Aslam said the Vinares Housing Project was the most quality housing project implemented to date. He said no other housing project had started and ended so well.

The majority of the flats under the Vinares project are reserved for Male' registered residents. However, 100 apartments have been reserved for those who are not registered in the city but have been living in the city for 15 years.

The general requirements for the Vinares flats are:

- Being a registered resident of the city
- Not bound to an agreement to purchase a housing unit or lot from the city of more than 600 square feet
- Must not be making any payments for the purchase of a housing unit or lot from the city of more than 600 square feet
- Must not have sold any residential property of 600 square feet or more in the city within the last three years
- Must not have previously owned a house under any government housing project.

The Vinares Flat project is targeted toward middle-income individuals. The construction of 10 towers, with 13 stories each, began during the administration of former President Abdulla Yameen. The towers have 1,344 three-bedroom apartments, each apartment between 883 and 902 square feet in size. The units will be sold at a price between MVR 2.5 million and MVR 2.7 million. Those who pay in installments will pay double the price over many years.