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Officials warn of housing surplus

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10:31 CEST+02:00
Officials at Sweden's National Board of Housing, Building and Planning are anxious at the number of apartments being built in the country. Despite widespread queues for available apartments in the country's cities, they say that there will soon be a surplus of housing.

In an opinion article in Sunday's Dagens's Nyheter, Ines Uusmann and Martin Hedenmo, both bosses at the housing agency, said the forced building of flats to meet the demands of an upcoming wave of youngsters leaving home would leave thousands of units empty in the future when they move out.

"The building of living space has sharply increased during the past years," said the two Board officials.

"We want to now warn people about the policy where volume continues to grow. To increase the building of living quarters for young people will lead to thousands of empty studio apartments"

The Swedish government set a goal for 120,000 new apartments to be built during the mandate period 2002-2006. The Uusmann and Hedenmo said these new flats will help fill the gap in apartments that have been missing during the past eight years.

The two said that future living requirements must be met with a combination of measures such as new building, repair and removal processes.

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