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Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Builders upbeat on 2011 industry outlook

The Master Builders Association Malaysia (MBAM) expects raw material prices for the construction industry to increase this year but still at a manageable level.

Its president, Kwan Foh Kwai said, the association expects the increase to be less than 10 per cent.

If raw material prices increase by more than 10 per cent, than the industry players would look at alternative sources, he told reporters after the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) between MBAM and Open University Malaysia (OUM) today.

"Raw material prices have always beeen subject to market forces. There will be increase (in prices) but within a reasonable percentage," he said.

On the 2011 outlook for the industry, Kwan said the MBAM is optimistic that the year would be good for the industry, backed by the implementation of projects under the 10th Malaysia Plan (10MP) and the Economic Transformation Programme (ETP).

On the MoU, he said both parties would work together to come up with educational and training programmes for the construction industry.

He highlighted that at present, there was a critical need to replenish the pool of skilled construction manpower, as a majority of the workers in it are already ageing.

According to Kwan, it is estimated that 35.1 per cent of local construction personnel would reach the age of 50 and above, seven years from now.

"The OUM programmes are specially developed and designed for working adults. The courses developed will incorporate knowledge and entrepreneurship skills which would be industry oriented," he explained.

Among the programmes are an Executive Diploma in Construction Project Organisation and Control, an Executive Diploma in Construction Management, an Executive Diploma in Project Management, an Executive Diploma in Contract Administration, an Executive Bachelor in Construction Supervisory Management, an Executive Bachelor in Integrated Contruction Project Management and an Executive Bachelor in Contract Management and Administration.

The Vice Chancellor of OUM, Prof Emeritus Tan Sri Anuwar Ali said, the programmes are expected to start next month.

By Bernama

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