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Business training “Green Mortgage Mechanisms” was held for the specialists of the banking sector of Ferghana valley (Fergana, Andijan and Namangan) during 27-29 November. The event was organized jointly by the Government of the Republic of Uzbekistan, UNDP Uzbekistan and the Global Environment Facility. Its main objective was to encourage construction of energy-efficient and low-carbon housing in rural areas.

The training was attended by over 70 representatives of specialized banks in Uzbekistan, such as: Qishloq Qurilish Bank, the National Bank for Foreign Economic Activities of Uzbekistan, O’zsanoatqurilishbank, Asaka Bank, Ipoteka Bank, and Xalq Bank.Around 25% of the training participants were women.

The training participants were presented with the essence and significance of “green mortgage” as a bank product in line with international best practice, using the experience of Sweden, USA, Mexico, Ukraine, as well as the main advantages and mechanisms of "green mortgage’, including procedures and financing schemes for "green mortgage” within the framework of the State rural housing programme.

800 rural households in 5 pilot regions (Samarkand, Bukhara, Surkhandarya, Ferghana, Khorezm regions) gained access to a specialized green mortgage bank product in 2019 within the framework of the Project, and it is noteworthy that the share of women as borrowers exceeded 53%.

“Green mortgage” is a bank product that allows homebuyers to purchase energy-efficient and low-carbon houses. The main benefit of such housing is savings on electricity and heating. This is beneficial for the owner and the environment as well, as burning hydrocarbon fuel is not wasted for lighting needs and house heating. Hence the greenhouse gas emissions are reduced accordingly.

It was noted at the training that the "green" mortgage is beneficial for the banks as well, considering they will have an innovative bank product that meets environmental requirements, allowing them to attract clients in rural areas.

Mr. Murod Rasulov, the Project Manager of the “Market Transformation for Sustainable Rural Housing in Uzbekistan” project noted:

- Now we utilize the GEF grant funds, and in cooperation with Qishloq Qurilish Bank green mortgages are issued to homebuyers. This project of allocating grant funds for green mortgages will continue until 2021. Our ultimate objective, in the long-run, is to develop a more sustainable commercial market mechanism of green mortgages, thanks to which wide range of the rural population will have access to a specialized green mortgage bank product.

 

The share of housing sector in greenhouse gas emissions is one of the highest, so energy efficiency in house construction is of paramount importance. It should be noted that energy-efficient and low-carbon solutions in the housing sector provide access to affordable and clean energy, which positively affects the environment. The cooperation of the stakeholderes of the “Market Transformation for Sustainable Rural Housing in Uzbekistan” project aimed at preventing climate change and stimulating the demand for EE and Low-carbon housing in Uzbekistan by introducing green mortgage mechanisms.

The bank experts provided feedback on the level of organization and informational content of business training. According to them, they gained knowledge on a banking product that they can use in future, which is important at the current stage of the country's economic reforms.

“Market Transformation for Sustainable Rural Housing in Uzbekistan” is our project which was established in 2017 and has contributed to the construction of 800 efficient houses in five regions (Samarkand, Bukhara, Surkhandarya, Fergana and Khorezm) of Uzbekistan since then.

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