Housing Finance in Mauritania


This profile is also available in French here.

To download a pdf version of the full 2020 Mauritania country profile, click here.

Mauritania is a middle-income country located between Sub-Saharan Africa and the Maghreb, with a population of about 4.5 million. In 2019, the urban population was 2.5 million inhabitants. Living conditions are deteriorating and precarious housing and slums are on the rise and are now home to nearly 80 percent of the urban population. In 2020, the country’s growth is expected to decline with forecasts of between -2 and -6.8 percent due to the global COVID-19 pandemic and lower demand for exports and foreign direct investment (FDI) from Europe and China.

Mauritania has 18 banks, including seven Islamic banks and five with majority foreign capital. Much of the access to finance is handled by microfinance institutions. Twenty-five microfinance institutions are active. Difficulties the banking sector faces include a fragmented and informal credit market. The country does not have a stock market and is struggling to develop a mortgage market or a bank specialising in mortgage loans capable of meeting demand. The number of home loans remains low. Five percent of adults over 15 had a home loan in 2017. In addition, the country is expected to face a funding gap and increased debt pressure due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Housing is a high-cost item in Mauritania. Renting or buying a house, mainly in the city, remains inaccessible for a large part of the population. Like rents, house purchase prices are high in cities.

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

Each year, CAHF publishes its Housing Finance in Africa Yearbook. The profile above is from the 2019 edition, which has up-to-date profiles for 55 African countries.

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