European Housing Ministers Meet in Brussels

On 9 and 10 December European Housing Ministers met in Brussels to discuss the sustainable financing of housing policies in times of crisis. This was an informal meeting at the invitation of the three regional ministers responsible for housing in Belgium.

Whilst housing remains a matter of national competence, EU policies are having an increasing effect on the national policies of the Member States, particularly in the areas of energy, European structural and investment funds, state aid and the Internal Market. The European system of coordination of economic policies known as the European Semester also results in country-specific recommendations which in some cases directly impact on national housing policies. The conclusions of the informal meeting recognise the diversity of the national markets and the importance of the housing markets for both private and public investment and for the performance of the European economy as a whole. The Ministers also recognise the long-term importance of housing for both social and economic reasons. They recommend that the Member States treat qualitative and quantitative housing needs in an integrated way and, when using the European Structural and Investment Fund 2014-2020, promote a greater synergy between integrated urban development, the preservation of natural and agricultural land, and a sustainable approach to housing and social cohesion. The Ministers also call upon the Commission to initiate an even more thorough monitoring of housing markets so that crises can be better anticipated and to ensure that the impact of the prudential rules adopted for regulated banking entities (Basel III) and insurance entities (Solvency II) be studied and evaluated. CEPI fully acknowledges and seeks to draw attention to the importance of the housing market for the EU economy and also calls for further studies to be carried out so that policy decisions taken can be fully informed. 

Click here to read the conclusions of the meeting of Housing Ministers.