Vitebsk Oblast plans to implement six social housing projects with gratuitous China's assistance, Deputy Chairman of the Vitebsk Oblast Executive Committee Vladimir Belous told the media, BelTA has learned.
Belarus and China signed an agreement on the implementation of social housing projects involving technical and economic assistance of the People's Republic of China. "China will allocate Belarus approximately $110 million for the construction of social housing in different regions. The money is given on a gratuitous basis," Vladimir Belous said. Vitebsk Oblast is the first region in the country that has proceeded to practical implementation of the project. "We are starting the construction of social houses in Vitebsk and Orsha for 120 and 108 apartments respectively. The houses are to be commissioned in February and May 2017. This is only the first step which will be followed by a second one when four more houses will be built in Vitebsk, Polotsk, Novopolotsk and Lepel," Vladimir Belous noted.
Vladimir Belous stressed that the towns for the projects were chosen for a reason. Specialists took into account the number of people in need of social housing. "The waiting list for social housing in the region includes 2,907 people. The majority of these people, more than 400, live in Orsha and Vitebsk. We have launched projects in the towns where the issue of social housing is especially pressing," the deputy chairman of the Vitebsk Oblast Executive Committee said.
He also remarked that a Chinese company is the principle contractor of the construction project. Belarusian building organizations that will erect housing using typical projects and local materials will serve as subcontractors. The Chinese side will provide engineering services and financing. According to Vladimir Belous, about Br6.5 million and Br7.4 million will be spent on the construction of the first two houses in Vitebsk and Orsha.
Vladimir Belous noted that this is not the first joint project. The region fruitfully cooperates with China and has already built a steam turbine installation at the Lukoml state district power plant. The Vitebsk HPP is currently under construction.
The official ceremony to start the construction of a social apartment house with the Chinese assistance was held in the Bilevo 3 neighborhood in Vitebsk. Attending the groundbreaking ceremony was Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of China to Belarus Cui Qiming and Vitebsk Oblast Vice Governor Vladimir Belous. They left their autographs on the first block in the foundation of the new house. The building is slated for commissioning in February 2017.