Experts Discussed the Development Strategy of the Housing and Utility Sector Until 2035

13 june 2019

The Analytical Center hosted a strategy session on the development prospects for the housing and utility sector until 2035. Representatives of government agencies and the expert community discussed the goals and objectives that need to be implemented to form an effective system in each sector of housing and public utilities.

"Housing and public utilities are an area that is important both for the development of the Russian economy and for every citizen, who experiences the tariff and the quality of services," said Tatiana Radchenko, Deputy Head of the Analytical Center at the opening ceremony of the strategy session.

She reminded that the Ministry of Construction, Housing and Utilities of the Russian Federation, together with other executive authorities, should prepare a development strategy for the housing and public utilities by November 1, 2019.

Experts are working on priorities for each industry area, explained Svetlana Nikonova, Director of the Housing and Utilities Development Department of the Ministry of Construction, Housing and Utilities of the Russian Federation. "We are trying to define the target pattern in detail, clearly specify our goals and form the most complete set of tasks for each area, then to combine them into a comprehensive plan," she added.

Sergey Sivaev, a professor at the High School of Urban Studies, advanced the opinion that the key issue of the future development strategy for the housing and public utilities was the formation of financial development institutions that should provide a favorable investment climate for lending in the housing and public utilities.

"Success is impossible without attracting money to apartment buildings and the public utilities," explained Mr. Sivaev. "However, banks do not understand how to lend to apartment buildings today. The role of the state is to form financial development institutions, create market credit products. Technologies in the sector cannot exist without them because there will be greater risks and technologies will not be implemented."

In addition, according to the urbanist, the sector requires a PPP system and development of public meeting institutions, where owners will adopt decisions in a simplified format. Mr. Sivaev clarified that the Russians spend about 10% of family income on housing and public utilities, which corresponds to the average European indicator. He believes that resource saving is important to ensure the availability of housing and public utility services.

The participants in the strategy session formulated four target priorities for the future strategy.

“Thus, it is necessary to provide the population with high-quality and reliable housing and utility services at an affordable price, convenient and understandable services in the housing and utility sector, create long-term and transparent rules for businesses in the housing and utilities sector, and introduce modern technologies, including digital ones," summarized Victoria Gimadi, the Head of the Department for Fuel and Energy Complex and Housing and Utility Services at the Analytical Center.