UN-HABITAT was entrusted with setting up and managing an "Observation" system for the housing sector after the UN Secretary- General approved the incorporation of this sector in the "Oil for Food" Programme in 2000. As a result, Iraq was able to import building materials and construction equipment for housing and social infrastructure, as well as spare parts for factories that produce building materials. The Office of the Iraq Programme asked UN-HABITAT to design and implement an observation plan for the distribution and use of housing sector commodities imported as part of the Oil-for-Food Programme. The objectives of the plan were to:
- Track down building materials and equipment through warehouse visits and spot checks at end-user construction sites;
- Assess who is using what and when; apply criteria of equity, efficiency, and adequacy in the implementation of allocation plans. The Observation of the Housing Sector project ended on 31May 2003 as per Security Council Resolution 1483.
- Warehouse visits, construction site spot checks based on representative samples
- End-user verification
- Reporting on utilization of imported building materials, construction equipment and spare parts distribution
The project produced regular reports and analyses of the housing sector in Central and Southern Iraq as required by the "Oil-for-Food" Programme.