President Message December 2013

President Message December 2013

MESSAGE FROM MBAM PRESIDENT, MR MATTHEW TEE

MBAM STAFF TRIP TO BANGKOK

MBAM Secretariat Staff held its first staff trip to Bangkok, Thailand on 1st – 4th November 2013. The MBAM Staff participating in the trip had the opportunity to visit interesting places such as the famous Chatuchak Weekend Market, Bangkok Floating Market, Asiatic Night Market and The Grand Palace.

Staff from different background, rank and experience came together through the staff trip and this hopefully will help to improve future working relationships in MBAM Secretariat through a better understanding of one another.  It is a significant milestone in forging staff relations and hopefully this incentive will further motivate the MBAM Secretariat staff to provide enhanced and improved services to serve MBAM members.

MITI MEETING ON THE CUSTOMS (PROHIBITION OF IMPORTS) ORDER ON BUILDING MATERIALS WITH INDUSTRY

MBAM representatives consisting of MBAM Council Member cum Chairman of Technical Committee, Mr. Ong Ka Thiam and MBAM Manager, Mr Michael Thong attended a meeting on Customs (Prohibition of Imports) Order on Building Materials with Industry on 1st November 2013 at Zamrud Hall, Bangunan MITI. The purpose of the meeting was to inform the construction industry stakeholders on the impending implementation of customs (Prohibition of Imports) Order on seven categories of Building Materials to ensure only quality products are used in the construction projects in accordance to the CIDB 520 Act.

SEMINAR ON OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY & HEALTH IN CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY IN KOTA KINABALU, SABAH

On 7th November 2013, Master Builders Association Malaysia (MBAM) Safety and Health Committee together with the Sabah Builders Association (SBA) had jointly organized a Seminar on “Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) in Construction Industry for Safety Personnel” at Promenade Hotel, Kota Kinabalu. The seminar was officiated by YBhg. Dato’ Ir. Dr. Johari bin Basri, Director General of Department of Safety and Health (DOSH), Ministry of Human Resources, Malaysia as the Guest of Honor.

It was attended by more than 75 participants including Mr Choo Kim Min, President of Sabah Builders Association (SBA). SBA has been a supportive affiliate of MBAM ever since they joined MBAM in 2000. MBAM is collaborating with SBA to support them in training safety personnel to jointly address common affairs and concerns of this industry with regards to safety and health issues.

SABAH BUILDERS ASSOCIATION 58TH ANNIVERSARY DINNER

I had the chance to deliver a speech as the Guest-of-Honor during Sabah Builders Association (SBA) 58th Anniversary Dinner on Friday 8th November, 2013 at the Hakka Port View Palace Hall, Tanjong Libat, Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. I thanked Mr Choo Kim Min, President of Sabah Builders Association (SBA) for inviting me as the Guest-of-Honour for the anniversary dinner. I also took the opportunity to congratulate SBA for their 58th Anniversary Dinner 2013 celebrations and hoped that SBA will always prosper and continue to play a prominent role in Sabah. Sabah look set to play a bigger role in generating the economic growth for this country as more and more major projects are allocated under the belt of the Negeri di Bawah Bayu.

I also extended my gratitude to SBA as they have been a supportive affiliate member of MBAM and I welcomed SBA to have greater involvement in MBAM activities. MBAM will continue to support SBA and with other relevant Government authorities, allied professional institutions and trade associations, to jointly address common affairs and concerns of this industry.

Construction Occupational Competency Development Programme (COCD) for Construction Trade Supervisor (Foreman)

The Second batch of Construction Occupational Competency Development Programme (COCD) for Construction Trade Supervisor (Foreman) commenced on 13th November 2013. 18 participants were shortlisted for the programme and are targeted to Completed & Graduated on 18th December 2013.

GOODS AND SERVICES TAX-ARE MALAYSIANS READY?

MBAM Senior Manager, Mr Lenny Lim attended the event on 14th November in One World Hotel  organized by New Straits Times entitled “Goods and Services Tax (GST): Are Malaysians Ready?” under the Business Times Insights Series.

YBhg. Dato’ Kamariah Hussain the Tax Advisor in GST Implementation Office of Ministry of Finance was the keynote speaker. According to the keynote speaker, the introduction of the GST is part of the Government’s tax reforms programmed to enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of the existing tax system. It has been proved to be a better tax system as it is more effective, efficient, transparent as well as business friendly. The introduction of the GST could spur economic growth as well as increase the country’s competitiveness in the global market. Panelist comprised of Malaysian Institute of Economic Research Executive Director, Dr Zakariah Abdul Rashid, Tax and Malaysia Sdn. Bhd. co-founder and Chairman, Dr Veerinderjeet Singh, Malaysian Rating Corporation Berhad Chief Economist, Mr Nor Zahidi Alias and Federation for Malaysian Consumer Associations Secretary General, YBhg. Dato’ Paul Selva Raj.

ROUNDTABLE ON TRANS-PACIFIC PARTNERSHIP AGREEMENT (TPPA)

MBAM Senior Manager, Mr Lenny Lim attended the above roundtable in ACCCIM Seminar Room in Jalan Ampang on 19th November 2013. Mr Edmund Sim, Partner, Appleton Luff Singapore spoke on TPPA-Controversies vs Benefits and the compatibility of the TPPA with the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) which has China but no USA. The RCEP involves ASEAN plus the FTAs which include China, Japan, Korea, India and Australia-NZ.  While TPPA include Singapore, Vietnam, Brunei, Malaysia, United States, Australia, NZ Canada, Peru, Chile, Canada, Mexico and Japan.

The TPPA also covers issues which ASEAN countries have not yet covered in their intra-ASEAN agreements such as labor, environment and intellectual property. Hence the TPPA presents countries with a different set of issues than the RCEP do, meaning that the two negotiations are not conceptually incompatible. Issues involved in the RCEP are more critical for countries wishing to negotiate in the TPPA. If a country is not able to deal with the RCEP issues, it will not be able to deal with most of the TPPA issues. In the opinion of the speakers, ASEAN members looking to participate in both RCEP and TPPA need to prioritize RCEP issues.

MBAM LOGO DESIGN COMPETITION – PRIZE PRESENTATION CEREMONY

On 21st November 2013, MBAM held the MBAM Logo Design Competition 2013 Prize Presentation Ceremony in recognition of the participants’ creativity in designing the MBAM logo at the Alfa International College.  The objective of the competition was to create an innovative logo that embodies the spirit of MBAM as a modern, proactive and resilient Association championing issues pertaining to the construction Industry.

MBAM showed our appreciation by presenting the certificates of participation to 38 students who have participated in this competition and awarded RM 200.00 for 6 students as consolation prizes. The grand prize worth RM 3,000.00 was won by Ms Eng Zui Chee for her outstanding design. We would like to thank the Judging Panel headed by our Honorary Advisor and Chairman of Awards & Constitution Committee Ir Lau Mun Cheong for undertaking the tasks.

 

CIDB CONSTRUCTION  INDUSTRY APPRECIATION NITE AND LAUNCH OF BUILD BRIGADE

CIDB organized its Construction Industry Appreciation Nite and launched its Build Brigade on 25th November 2013 in Hilton Kuala Lumpur. MBAM Honorary Advisor (Contracts), Mr Lim Chong Fong, MBAM Deputy President, Mr Aziz Tan Sri Bahaman, MBAM Vice President, Mr Foo Chek Lee,  MBAM Deputy Secretary-General 2, Mr Oliver Wee, MBAM Past Vice President, YBhg. Dato’ Ir. Tan Gim Foo, MBAM Executive Director, Ms Loh Mei Ling, MBAM Senior Manager, Mr Lenny Lim and MBAM Manager, Mr Michael Thong attended the event on behalf of MBAM. The Appreciation Nite was to honour contributions organisations or individuals for CIDB Initiated programmes while Build Brigade is a Community Social Responsibility (CSR) programme that provides assistance and support to deserving communities in need. MBAM received several appreciations by the following representatives which are:

  • Steering Committee for the Construction Industry Payment and Adjudication Act (CIPAA) – Mr Lim Chong Fong
  • Steering Committee Advisory for SCORE Programme- Datuk Ir. Tan Gim Foo
  • Steering Committee Malaysian Construction Industry Excellence Awards (MCIEA) 2012  (International Achievement) –

           Mr Aziz Tan Sri Bahaman

  • Steering Committee MCIEA 2012 (Contractor Award G4 to G6) – Mr Oliver Wee
  • Foreman Committee-Ms Loh Mei Ling

TALK ON CIDB AMENDMENT ACT 2011

MBAM organized a half day talk on 27th November 2013 which attracted 65 participants at MBAM Training Centre. The talk focused on the scope of the act and touched on the new provisions in the Act which are not in the Principal Act including:

  • Registration, Accreditation, Certification and training of construction personnel
  • Accreditation of Contractors
  • Standard and Codes of practice in the construction industry
  • Statutory duty of Contractors
  • Enforcement and investigation

The highlights of the talk included:

  • Relationship of the Act to other relevant Acts affecting construction
  • Roles and responsibilities of contractors as defined by the Act
  • The importance of the Act in improving quality of construction products and services
  • Relevant case studies and key learning points

 

SEMINAR ON BUDGET 2014-TAX PERSPECTIVE & ITS IMPACT ON CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY

MBAM Finance Committee organized a talk on the above topic on 27th November in MBAM Training Centre.  A total of 73 participants attended the event with MBAM Honorary Advisor (Tax), Mr Yee Wing Peng as the invited speaker and MBAM President, Mr Matthew Tee and MBAM Immediate Past President, Mr Kwan Foh Kwai as the panelist. The attendees raised a lot of questions on the implementation of GST as well as on how it would impact the construction industry. Overall it was a well participated event which also saw the attendance of En Muhammad Hatta Amran, Manager of CIDB International Division, CIDB Malaysia.

 

COURTESY VISIT TO SEE THE MINISTER OF WORKS, MALAYSIA

The Courtesy visit to see the Minister of Works, Malaysia, Yang Berhormat Datuk Haji Fadillah bin Haji Yusof  at the Ministry of Works office on the 27th November 2013 was attended by MBAM Immediate Past President, Mr Kwan Foh Kwai, MBAM Deputy President, Mr Aziz Tan Sri Bahaman, MBAM Secretary General, Ir. Chuan Yeong Ming and I. The following issues were discussed:-

  • Critical shortage of skilled and unskilled workers in the Construction Industry
  • Large Scale Raids by the Ministry of Home Affairs Affecting the Productivity of the Construction Industry
  • Delay in the Implementation of Construction Industry Payment and Adjudication Act (CIPAA)
  • High Import Duties and Sales Tax on Heavy Construction Machineries Limits the Growth of the Industry
  • Implication of Trade Liberalisation Under Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement to the Construction Industry
  • Feedback on CIDB Amendment Act 2011

The meeting proved to be very crucial to help resolve key issues affecting the construction industry and cemented the role of the Association as the Prime Mover and Recognized Voice of the construction industry.

 

COURTESY VISIT TO BERNAMA

MBAM organized a courtesy visit to BERNAMA Editor-in-Chief, YBhg. Datuk Zulkefli Salleh, on 28th November 2013 at Wisma BERNAMA to discuss on critical issues that are seriously affecting the growth of the construction industry. MBAM also took the opportunity during the dialogue to discuss on potential feature story in conjunction with MBAM 60th Anniversary next year. The courtesy visit was attended by MBAM Immediate Past President, Mr Kwan Foh Kwai, MBAM Deputy President, Mr Aziz Tan Sri Bahaman, MBAM Secretary General, Mr Chuan Yeong Ming and I. The meeting was a great opportunity to build better media relations as well as to understand the opportunities to build public awareness for MBAM 60th Anniversary celebrations.

In conclusion, November proved to be yet another busy month for MBAM, and the Association is enhancing its efforts to ensure that the 60th Anniversary Celebrations in 2014 will be a resounding success. In this respect, I hope that MBAM Members that have not confirmed their participation in MBAM 60th Anniversary Coffee Table book will quickly take the opportunity to advertise and stamp their mark in the publication as a show of support and be a part of this significant milestone in the history of MBAM.

November has been a most busy month in that many organizations held their annual dinner in anticipation of 2013 winding up. As we head towards December, I would like to wish the Christians Merry Christmas and everybody a most happy new year in anticipation of another good year for the construction sector in 2014.

 

Yours faithfully,

MASTER BUILDERS ASSOCIATION MALAYSIA

MATTHEW TEE

President