Housing Finance in Comoros


This profile is also available in French here.

To download a pdf version of the full 2021 Comoros country profile, click here.

The Union of Comoros has the estimated population as of 1 July 2021 was 888 451, a slight increase from the 2020 figure of 869 595. The United Nations estimates that around 29.4% of the population lives in urban areas, making Comoros one of the least urbanised populations in Africa. Urban areas in Comoros include Moroni, Fomboni, and Mutsamudu and these serve as the country’s municipalities. Human Development Index for Comoros in 2019 was 0.554 (0.583 for men and 0.519 for women) being one of the lowest at 156 out of 189 countries. The Gross National Income (GNI) per capita in Comoros has increased by approximately 1.5% between 1990 and 2019. However, low levels of development activity, extreme poverty levels, and political instability have curtailed the expansion of housing sector development, including social housing for the poor.

Comoros is one of the world’s poorest and smallest countries, with most of its population (especially those living in rural areas) relying on subsistence agriculture and fishing for their livelihoods. Subsistence agriculture yields maize, cassava, sweet potatoes, coconuts, yams, and rice, with most essential food supplies being imported. Comoros is the second-largest producer of vanilla and the world’s leading producer of ylang-ylang perfume oil. However, it is plagued by poor economic conditions, overpopulation, severe unemployment, climate change, poor harvests, and a lack of adequate transportation. About 25% of GDP and the foreign exchange inflows from these transfers exceed those derived from exports and migrant remittances mostly from France and Madagascar.

The country applied a non-containment strategy to fight the pandemic and did not institute a total lockdown on free movement. The real GDP declined by -0.9% in 2020 compared with 2% growth in 2019, due to a reduction in tourism revenues and a decline in the export of cash crops. Moreover, restrictions on international travel in 2020 strongly affected the service sector which accounts for more than 50% of GDP. From the demand side, consumption of goods stagnated while the growth in the investment rate fell in 2020 to 1.8%, up from 10.5% in 2019. The budget deficit in 2020 increased to 3.6% of GDP, compared with 2.1% in 2019. This is due to the economic slump brought about by the COVID-19 crisis leading to a lower collection of tax revenues. According to World Bank’s Doing Business 2020 report, Comoros was placed at 160 out of 190 countries surveyed in 2020 compared with 164 in 2019.

By the end of 2021, the Comorian economy is expected to grow by 3.5%, depending on the relaxation of COVID-19 lockdowns both globally and within the country. Travel restrictions have been relaxed and the airport is open to visitors with a negative test within the last 72 hours. As of July 2021, Comoroshas received 100,000 doses of the Chinese Covid-19 vaccine and distribution has already begun. It is also likely to receive 20% vaccine coverage by the end of 2021 through the COVAX initiative. The Comorian economy is also slowly recovering with budget deficits expected to reduce to 2.4% of GDP by the end of 2021. The current account deficit is expected to decline to 3.6% of GDP with an increased flow of external resources and financing in 2021.

Find out more information on the housing finance sector of Comoros, including key stakeholders, important policies, and housing affordability:

Each year, CAHF publishes its Housing Finance in Africa Yearbook. The profile above is from the 2021 edition, which has up-to-date profiles for 55 African countries.

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