RM9.5b government contracts delayed


  • Nation
  • Wednesday, 25 Jun 2003

BY YAP LIH HUEY AND K. SAITHURUKA

KUALA LUMPUR: Seventy per cent or RM9.5bil worth of government contracts awarded to private contractors last year could not be delivered on time, says Works Minister Datuk S. Samy Vellu.  

Of the RM23.5bil total government contracts implemented last year, about 70% or RM16.5bil were awarded to private contractors and from this total, only 30% or RM7bil contracts were successfully completed by the private contractors, he said when opening the construction industry CEOs roundtable here yesterday.  

Speaking to reporters later, he said the amount of losses incurred due to the delays would be worked out by the Finance Ministry.  

He added that the Public Works Department would carry out projects worth RM3bil this year.  

“There is a lot of work by the Government in the pipeline but we need to give time for the industry to adjust to the economy first. Some of the important and necessary projects have been carried out, while those that could (be withheld) have been withheld for a while,” he said.  

He said that the value of government projects this year would not “be big compared to last year”. 

The one-day dialogue brought players in the construction and construction-related industries and associations together for the first time to discuss and address outstanding issues that had been gripping the industry for years. 

The session was expected to to look at ways to improve the overall industry, which is facing increasing challenges in an open market.  

It was co-organised by the Construction Industry Development Board Malaysia and the Building Industry Presidents’ Council (BIPC). BIPC is, among others, represented by Master Builders Association, Real Estate and Housing Developers Association, Association of Consulting Engineers, the Institution of Engineers, the Institution of Surveyors, Malaysian Institute of Planners and Pertubuhan Arkitek Malaysia.  

Samy Vellu urged construction companies to be less dependent on labour and go for capital and technology-intensive methods. 

“We want the industry to be modern and less dependent on foreign workers. Now if there are contracts, we have to wait until we have the workers,” he said. 

He said Immigration Department statistics showed that 73% of foreign workers arrived as wet trade workers such as concrete, wood or brick makers, adding that the industry had to reduce such workers. 

He said industry captains should use modern building techniques such as off-site casting and be accustomed to the industrialised or component building system (IBS). 

“When you combine IBS with modern management technology, quality and productivity is upgraded and time is saved,” he said.  

Samy Vellu said contractors should participate in international projects to create a benchmark among competitors in the local industry. 

“Don’t be satisfied with imported technology transfer but develop it so that it can become our indigenous technology,” he said, adding that research and development played a role here.  

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