By Mamta Badkar
3 July 2012
There's been a lot written about ghost cities in China.
Just outside Angola's capital city of Luanda is Nova Cidade de Kilamba a residential development of 750 eight-story apartment buildings, a dozen schools, and more than 100 retail units, reports the BBC's Louise Redvers.
The $3.5 billion development covers 12,355 acres and was built to house about 500,000 people, and this is one of "several satellite cities being constructed by Chinese firms around Angola," writes Redvers.
Angolan president José Eduardo dos Santos has touted the 'Kilamba social housing project' as an example of his social policy, and he has brought international policymakers including Chinese vice-president Xi Jingping to the site.
But the apartments in the complex cost somewhere between $120,000 and $200,000 according to online advertisements cited by BBC. Other anecdotal reports put the price of 3-bedroom apartment at about $250,000.
None of which helps the average Angolan given the country's per capita GDP of $5,144 per year, according to the World Bank.
And let's not forget, Angola serves as China's largest source of oil in Africa. Some like energy expert @pcdunham speculate this could be in preparation for oil money that is expected once the country begins developing new oil discoveries.
We pooled together some images we found of this ghost town from news reports and from this non-profit's Facebook page to give you a look at the Kilamba housing project.
By Louise Redvers
2 July 2012
Kilamba, Angola (BBC) – The ghost towns of China, Ireland, and Spain - full of large empty house estates - may be a phenomenon that is on its way to Africa.
Built for people who never move in, they leave those who did with a worthless property they cannot sell.
Perched in an isolated spot some 30km (18 miles) outside of Angola's capital, Luanda, Nova Cidade de Kilamba is a brand-new mixed residential development of 750 eight-storey apartment buildings, a dozen schools and more than 100 retail units.
Designed to house up to half a million people when complete, Kilamba has been built by the state-owned China International Trust and Investment Corporation (CITIC) in under three years at a reported cost of $3.5bn (£2.2bn).
Spanning 5,000 hectares (12,355 acres), the development is the largest of several new "satellite cities" being constructed by Chinese firms around Angola, and it is believed to be one of the largest new-build projects on the continent.
The jewel in Angola's post-war reconstruction crown, Kilamba is the star of glossy government promotional videos which show smiling families enjoying a new style of living away from the dust and confusion of central Luanda where millions live in sprawling slums.
But the people in these films are only actors, and despite all the hype, nearly a year since the first batch of 2,800 apartments went on sale, only 220 have been sold.
When you visit Kilamba, you cannot help but wonder if even a third of those buyers have moved in yet.
The place is eerily quiet, voices bouncing off all the fresh concrete and wide-open tarred roads.
There are hardly any cars and even fewer people, just dozens of repetitive rows of multi-coloured apartment buildings, their shutters sealed and their balconies empty.
Only a handful of the commercial units are occupied, mostly by utility companies, but there are no actual shops on site, and so - with the exception of a new hypermarket located at one entrance - there is nowhere to buy food.
After driving around for nearly 15 minutes and seeing no-one apart from Chinese labourers, many of whom appear to live in containers next to the site, I came across a tiny pocket of life at a school. […]