President Monthly Message September 2015

PRESIDENT MESSAGE-SEPTEMBER 2015

September will be a busy month for Master Builders Association Malaysia (MBAM) as we have numerous events lined up for this month. The series of events will kick off with MBAM Appreciation Night on 4th September 2015. Every year, MBAM will be awarding scholarships to outstanding students through our MBAM Education Fund. This year we will be awarding scholarships to 9 students and rewarding another 6 students for getting 1st Class Honour. Apart from that, MBAM will also be presenting MBAM Long Service Awards to deserving members and Membership Certificates to New Members. For the first time we will be awarding the Special Mention Award, to YBhg. Tan Sri Datuk Tee Hock Seng for his contributions to the Association throughout the years.

Following that, MBAM will be organizing the 1st ASEAN Construction Summit on 10th – 11th September 2015. The Summit will be held in conjunction with the CIDB Malaysia International Construction Week 2015 (7th – 11th September 2015). The theme for this year’s Summit is “Towards Building a Sustainable Future”. Participants of the Summit will also be able to visit other events organized in conjunction with the ICW 2015 such as Ecobuild SEA 2015 Exhibition, Construction Showcase Exhibition and Career Fair.

Before the month ends, MBAM will be celebrating the 61st Anniversary Dinner on 18th September 2015 at Sunway Resort Hotel & Spa. With the theme “Empowering the Construction Industry with a Solid Foundation”, I hope MBAM members will provide their unconditional support for this event as the MBAM Building Fund programme will be held in conjunction with the dinner. All donations made at the dinner will be channeled to buy a piece of land for MBAM’s new building.

The following were key events and happenings in August 2015:-

Dialogue with National Ready-Mixed Concrete Association of Malaysia (NRMCA)

The meeting in session

The representatives of NRMCA

On 7th August 2015, National Ready Mixed Concrete Association of Malaysia (NRMCA) visited MBAM to discuss on the new ruling by DBKL on the Application of Permit Angkut Bahan. The meeting was attended by President of NRMCA, Mr Leong Yew Kuen, as well as NRMCA Council Members, Mr Deza Mohd, Mr Eric Wong and Mr Ganesan Krishnan. While MBAM was represented by MBAM Vice President, Mr Liew Hau Seng, as well as MBAM Material Resources Committee Members, Mr Tan Siew Lian, Ms Cho Foong Khuan, Ms Teh Lay Poh, Mr Ooi Tat Lean, Mr Kum Eu Tsung and Mr Tony Foo. MBAM Executive Director, Ms Loh Mei Ling, MBAM Senior Manager, Mr Lenny Lim and MBAM Senior Executive Officer, Mr Leon Leong also attended the meeting.

With the new ruling each concrete supplier with 100 trucks supplying to 20 projects will need to apply for 20 permits for every truck. For example, for a large company with a fleet of 300 trucks supplying 30 projects, the total amount payable will be RM450,000 every 3 months, which is a large sum of money. This will severely affect the businesses in operation. To conclude, NRMCA will continues to follow up on this matter and update MBAM on the end result.

Courtesy Visit to CIDB Malaysia

MBAM Deputy President, Mr Foo Chek Lee accompanied by MBAM Vice President, Ir. Chuan Yeong Ming presenting a token of appreciation to the CIDB General Manager of Contractor Personnel Development Sector, Encik Mohd Nazli Ahmad

The discussion between MBAM and CIDB in progress

Further to the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed between CIDB Malaysia and Master Builders Association Malaysia (MBAM) on 15th April 2015, MBAM have organized another follow up meeting on 18th August 2015 to discuss on the established co-operation and collaboration between CIDB Malaysia and MBAM in the construction industry. The collaboration will be for enhancing the occupational safety and health (OSH) in the construction industry through OSH development, accreditation, certification and training for construction personnel.

We hope CIDB Malaysia will consider the suggestions that MBAM have brought up during the meeting as we strongly believes that with strong support from CIDB, MBAM would be able to train and increase the quantity of qualified SSS in the industry and help to reduce the serious shortage of competent safety personnel in the construction industry.

Industrial ENGAGEMENT BETWEEN Bank Negara Malaysia And Master Builders Association Malaysia

MBAM President, Mr Matthew Tee presenting a token of appreciation to Ms Punitha from Bank Negara Malaysia

The economists from Bank Negara

Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) extended a request for a discussion with MBAM on 21st August 2015 at MBAM Conference Room. The discussion was attended by MBAM Vice President, Tan Sri Dato’ Sri Sufri Bin Haji Mohd Zin and I while BNM was represented by Ms Cheah Su Ling, Senior Economist and Ms Punithaa Kylasapathy, Economist.

Areas covered in the discussion include the performance of the Malaysian construction sector, as well as business concerns on the implementation of the GST. Among the issues raised include the fact that contractors are experiencing tighter cash flow now. A critical problem is when clients paid late and this will force contractors to absorb the tax. Contractors have to pay tax to suppliers for material and hardware (input tax) but will then charge the tax to clients for services (output tax). But when clients take too long to settle the bill, contractors won’t be able to collect the output tax and use it to claim refunds from the Customs Department so as to make up for the input tax charged to them. If a client takes too long in paying, the input tax will start to eat into the company’s operating budget.

MBAM hopes Bank Negara Malaysia will raise the relevant issues with the Government so that the construction industry can continue to perform and contribute towards nation building.

Roundtable on Affordable Housing with Khazanah Research Institute

Khazanah Research Institute held a roundtable meeting with stakeholders such as property developers and relevant government agencies to discuss on the affordability of houses in Malaysia. The discussion which were held on 24th August 2015 at level 29, Mercu UEM, KL Sentral was attended by more than 20 stakeholders. Khazanah also launched the report on “Making Housing Affordable” at the roundtable meeting. The report proposed new institutional framework for creating a responsive and sustainable supply of houses at affordable prices. After a brief words welcome by Datuk Charon Mokhzani, Managing Director, Khazanah Research Institute, the roundtable meeting continued with the presentation by Dr Suraya Ismail, Director of Research, Khazanah Research Institute. MBAM Honorary Advisor (Education) Mr Chua Siow Leng attended the meeting accompanied by MBAM PR Executive, Ms Tessa Hamid.

SOCSO – Accidents Prevention Seminar (APS) 2015

The SOCSO Accident Prevention Seminar (APS) 2015 “Bridging the gap in prevention: Integrating Safety & Health at the Workplace” on 25th August 2015 was attended by MBAM Executive Director, Ms Loh Mei Ling and MBAM Assistant Manager, Mr Mohd Farhan Mohammad Din at Tun Hussein Onn Hall, Putra World Trade Centre (PWTC) Kuala Lumpur.

This seminar was held with the aim of gathering Occupational Safety & Health (OSH) practitioners in the country to discuss current issues within the respective fields of OSH. In accordance with the changing demography and risks relating to the OSH practices affecting Malaysian employees, the seminar had evolved to reflect the nature of OSH approaches in the country. The APS strived to continue to challenge OSH practitioners to discuss new challenges that may arise in the future.

This year, the theme was deliberately chosen to challenge participants to discuss the integration of established safety management system and health management at the workplace. This is in response to the emerging risk of epidemic of non-communicable diseases at the work site.

37th Building Industry Presidents’ Council (BIPC) Meeting

MBAM Vice President, Tan Sri AK Nathan and MBAM Secretary General, Mr Dennis Tan during the BIPC Meeting

The BIPC Members

The 37th Building Industry President’s Council (BIPC) meeting was organized on 25th August 2015 at MBAM Conference Room. The following were representatives from MBAM:

  • Tan Sri AK Nathan, MBAM Vice President
  • Mr Dennis Tan, MBAM Secretary-General
  • Ms Loh Mei Ling, MBAM Executive Director and
  • Mr Lenny Lim, MBAM Senior Manager

During the approximately 1 hour meeting, the following issues were discussed:

  • The Minimum Wage for Indonesian foreign construction workers
  • Business concerns on implementation of GST                  
  • Permit under the 6P Programme expiring end of 2015
  • Employment Insurance System
  • Machineries high import duties update
  • CIDB Act 520 – its implementation and impact on the Industry
  • Update on Construction Industry Payment and Adjudication Act (CIPAA)

In conclusion, MBAM will continue to work with BIPC and play our role to help transform the construction industry together.

CIPAA Seminar/Workshop- “CIPAA 2012-How Does It Work For You”

MBAM Chairman of C&P Committee, Mr Oliver Wee and MBAM Deputy Chairman of C&P Committee, Mr Steven Shee with the speakers at the seminar

The participants attending the seminar

The CIPAA Workshop/Seminar – CIPAA 2012 – “How does it work for you?” organized by MBAM in collaboration with Ms Tan Swee Im of Swee Im, PY Hoh and Tai Advocates and Solicitors and Mr Peter Clayton, Partner of Pinsent Masons Advocates and Solicitors Hong Kong on the practical implications of CIPAA and hands-on exposure on the real life cases in Victorian Ballroom, Holiday Villa Subang was very successful. After a short welcome speech by MBAM Deputy Secretary-General 1 Cum Contracts & Practices Committee Chairman, Mr Oliver Wee, Ms Tan Swee Im and Mr Alvin Tan of Swee Im, PY Hoh and Tai Advocates and Solicitors started the programme by giving a short overview on the history of CIPAA and how it will affect contractors and sub-contractors as well as the current status of adjudication process where CIPAA is concerned. After that Mr Peter Clayton talked on the subject of Contracts and the key provisions of CIPAA that have effect regardless of what the contract says, especially on the legislation and how to avoid ambiguity.

This was followed by an interesting workshop on the Contract Administration and Procedures as well as how CIPAA can improve cash flow and reduce disputes. Attendees were also briefed on how to best prepare a claim for adjudication and on how to respond an adjudication.

Overall, 113 participated in the event, which saw a lot of participation and questions from MBAM members.

Visit by United states Softwood Association

The representatives from US Softwood Association

Presenting a token of appreciation to the delegates from United States

On 27th August 2015, MBAM received a visit from the United States Softwood Association to discuss on usage of Softwood in Malaysia particularly in the Construction and Furniture Making Industries. The meeting was attended by MBAM Vice President, Ir. Chuan Yeong Ming and MBAM Deputy Secretary General 2, Mr Ong Ka Thiam and MBAM Council Member, Mr Kenneth Liew. While the US Softwood Association was represented by Mr Gerard Hingle, Ms Natalie Macias, Mr Chris Knowles and a representative from the US Embassy in Malaysia, Mr Abdul Ghani Wahab. During the meeting MBAM and US Softwood Association exchanged information on the current scenario in Malaysia construction industry. They are interested to learn more about the industry if they were to venture in Malaysian market in the future.

 Hari Raya Haji will be celebrated at the end of September, I wish to take this opportunity to wish all my Muslim friend “Selamat Hari Raya Haji”! May you have good times with your loved ones, filled with love, joy and togetherness.

 

 

MATTHEW TEE

President