Thorough preliminary on luxury segment needed, says works minister

By IZZAT RATNA / Pic By MUHD AMIN NAHARUL

Property developers should conduct thorough preliminary study before pushing supplies within the luxury segment into the market, said Works Minister Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof.

He said the government is aggressively monitoring new project approvals for high-end commercial and residential developments depending on the market’s demand.

On Sunday, Finance Minister II Datuk Seri Johari Abdul Ghani said the government has frozen approvals for the development of luxury commercial and residential properties that are priced above RM1 million, effective Nov 1.

Fadillah said the move is not a blanket stop order for development, but it is merely a precautionary measure against the rising glut.

“This move could also potentially prevent developers’ profit margin to decline further in the current challenging operating environment,” he told reporters on the sidelines of the myBIM Centre launch ceremony in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.

Fadillah said based on the trend in the construction industry; there will be a glut within the commercial segment, in particular shopping malls, if there is no immediate action taken by responsible parties.

On the outlook of the construction industry next year, Fadillah said the ministry aims to register high single-digit growth on the back of largescale public and private projects.

Based on Bank Negara Malaysia latest announcement, the construction industry recorded a 6.1% gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate above the national level.

In 2018, the minister said there will be approximately RM2 billion worth of investments to come on stream for the upgrading of rural schools in Sabah and Sarawak, coupled with the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High-speed Rail, East Coast Rail Link and West Coast Expressway projects.

“We are confident for the construction industry to remain as one of the main contributors to the nation’s growth by simultaneously creating a chain effect to other key sectors of the economy,” he said Meanwhile, the ministry will make it compulsory for all government-linked projects above RM100 million to incorporate the usage of Building Information Modelling (BIM) into their development by 2019.

“Once mega-scale developments are promoting BIM in 2019; the private sector is also expected to migrate from the traditional system into BIM, followed by more utilisation of the Industrialised Building System.”

”Hopefully by doing that, contractors, developers, and all government agencies will fully subscribe to this new wave of technology,” Fadillah said.

At present, the adoption of BlM in Malaysia is at 17% compared to the US and the UK with 71% and 54% respectively.

Among the projects that have incorporated BIM are the National Cancer Institute in Putrajaya, the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission Building in Shah Alam (Selangor), the Educity Sports Complex in Nusajaya (Johor) and the Ancasa Hotel in Pekan, Pahang.

The Construction Industry Development Board Malaysia (CIDB) also aims to boost the usage of BIM in the construction sector through its newly launched RM3 million resource platform, myBlM Centre.

CIDB CEO Datuk Ahmad Asri Abdul Hamid said the advantages of implementing BIM in building projects extend throughout the entire construction value chain.

“By being able to virtually analyse key physical and functional characteristics of each element even before construction works commence, it helps to improve the efficiency and quality, and most importantly, the productivity of the overall construction process,” he said.

The implementation of BIM is a part of the initiatives to more than double productivity in the industry — in line with the Construction Industry Transformation Programme 2016-2020.