President’s Monthly Message August 2015

PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE- AUGUST

To date MBAM has recruited up to 74 new members, I believe by the end of this year we will be able to achieve our target of 120 new members with flying colors. I would also like to encourage our members to continuously recommend new members for the Association, as through union we will have a stronger voice in matters related to the industry.

MBAM will be organizing a number of interesting events in the near future. The “CIPAA 2012 – How Does it Work for YOU?” will be taking place on 26th August 2015 at Holiday Villa, Subang Jaya. The seminar and workshop will be drawing on real experiences and cases and have a practical and commercial approach to the subject matter. In addition, MBAM will also be organizing the 1st ASEAN Construction Summit 2015. The theme for the 1st ASEAN Construction Summit 2015 is “Towards Building A Sustainable Future” is timely as construction industry players are very concerned regarding challenges to the growth and sustainability of the Asian construction industry. This inaugural summit will be held on 10th – 11th September 2015 at PWTC. Following close on the same month, MBAM will also be organizing 61st MBAM Anniversary Dinner on 18th September 2015. In concurrence with the dinner will be our building fund donation drive, set to be held at the Sunway Resort Hotel and Spa and we are expecting more than 2000 number of guests.

I hope our members will give their support for our upcoming events and continue to contribute towards the growth of the Association.

BFM’s Interview

MBAM President, Mr Matthew Tee with Deloitte GST expert, Mr Senthuran Elalingam

During the recording session

I was invited for my 2nd radio interview with BFM on 1st July 2015 at BFM 89.9 office in BU8 and was interviewed by Ms Angeline Teh. This time, the topic on hand was GST and the impact on the property and construction industry. During the brief interview, I commented on there being no drop in activities after the implementation of GST, as contractors need to honour their contractual obligations, otherwise they will be penalized.

On the whole, yes contractors have to contend with tighter cash flow now but they would have to learn how to better manage their cash flow with the GST. A potential problem will be when clients paid late and forced 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 starts to eat into a company’s operating budget. Some suppliers, for instance, have single digit profit margins. So if they cannot get the output tax back in time, they will suffer. When our supply chain suffers, contractors will also feel the impact. Overall, this interview is a great opportunity for MBAM to express the views from the perspective of the construction industry on the current issues.

MBAM Staff Trip 2015 to Guilin

Group photo of the secretariat staff

At the edge of a mountain

As part of MBAM employee relations and benefit, MBAM Secretariat staff went on a trip to Guilin, China from the 2nd to 6th July 2015. The name Guilin literally means “Forest of Sweet Osmanthus”. Located in the northeastern part of Guangxi, Guilin has long been praised as the most picturesque place in China and is one of the must-see cities for tourists. The trip covered some of the key tourist attractions in Guilin China including a boat cruise on the beautiful Li River, Red Flute Cave and Silver Cave as well as the West Street in Yangshuo. More importantly the trip provided the opportunity for the more senior staff to get to know the rookie staff and also to reenergize themselves. Overall, the trip gave MBAM secretariat staff a chance to strengthen their bond and develop a better understanding amongst themselves.

Session 6: Risk Management/ Bonds & Insurances

Mr HT Ong during the talk

The attendees for the final in the series of 6 sessions of practical construction contract administration/management programme

MBAM Contracts and Practices Committee organized the last in the series of training facilitated by Mr HT Ong on 7th July 2015 in MBAM Training Centre. This brings to conclusion a programme spanning more than 6 months which is hoped has better educate members on the Practical Construction Contract Administration/Management.

The final programme attracted 51 registration with 10 completing all six programme. Overall, it was an interesting programme and has helped better educate attendees on risk mitigation management strategies. In conclusion, to effectively manage risks in construction projects, it is essential to identify important risks, and properly allocate them to the contractual parties.

Seminar on Goods & Services Tax – Practical Issues Faced By Construction Industry & 10 Common Mistakes On GST

The speaker during the talk

The almost full house

Managing Partner of YYC Advisors, Ms Yap Shin Siang delivered a talk on the subject of Goods & Services Tax (GST) – “Practical Issues Faced by Construction Industry & 10 Common Mistakes On GST Submission” on 9th July 2015 at MBAM Training Centre. The talk attracted 75 participants.

MBAM conducted this talk with the aim to prepare staff of MBAM member companies on how to deal with practical issues faced by the industry with regards to GST. Areas that were covered in the talk include the issue of time of supply, tax invoice and letter of claim, progress payment, retention amount, liquidated damages and rectification of defect. The talk also covered “10 Common Mistakes on GST Submission” and discussed on the common mistakes that you should avoid in filling in GST, return for submission and how to make payment. This event seminar is one of MBAM continuous effort to help our members in dealing with GST which was implemented on 1st April 2015. Overall, it was a successful talk with many members participating in the question and answer session as there were a number of aspects of the GST that members still need clarifications. MBAM will conduct more such programmes on the GST depending on the demand by members.

MBAM Education Fund Scholarship IntervieW

The short listed applicants for the MBAM Scholarship Awards

Interview in session

MBAM Education Fund Scholarship Interview was conducted on 27th July 2015 at MBAM Secretariat office.   Total applications shortlisted for MBAM Education Scholarship 2015 were 16 students. 12 students attended the Interview Session on 27th July 2015.

 

The MBAM Education Fund Board of Management (BoM) meeting was chaired by MBAM Honorary Advisor (Education) Mr Chua Siow Leng at its meeting held on the same day. The meeting was held after the interview session ended. It was attended by MBAM Education Fund BoM Honorary Advisors, MBAM Honorary Life President, YBhg Datuk Lai Foot Kong, MBAM Honorary Advisor, YBhg Dato’ Ir, Tan Kia Loke, and other members of the BoM, Prof. Dr. Selvaraj Oyyan Pillay and Universiti Teknologi MARA Associate Professor Nor Ainah Bt Abdullah and MBAM Secretary-General, Mr Dennis Tan. The BOM has recommended 9 students for the scholarship programme for 2015.

 

We are also reaching the month of August in no time. Time really flies when we have a lot of things on our plate. As this month marks our 58th Merdeka Day, I would like to take this opportunity to wish all Malaysian a very happy Merdeka Day! Please bear in mind that Merdeka Day is more than just a holiday, it’s a celebration of all that is Malaysian. It’s a celebration of our shared heritage despite our differences in culture; races and religion, of being united under one country called Malaysia. I hope this country will continue to prosper in many years to come and our multicultural uniqueness will be a source of strength despite the many challenges that are coming our way.

 

 

Matthew Tee

President