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The future of Malaysia's construction industry

Malaysia's construction industry is going from strength to strength, with a whole host of newly-announced projects promising to increase activity. The country already has a lot of projects in the works, with an ever-changing urban landscape offering plenty of opportunities.

However, the latest projects seem set to boost the industry even more. Chief executive of the Construction Industry Development Board (CIDB), Dr Judin Abdul Karim, said that although the country is undergoing a change in its economic climate, the construction industry will remain robust.

There are a number of high-value projects already in the pipeline, with affordable housing and highways being constructed, as well as the Light Rail Transit 3 project. To boost things further, the government has just announced a new plan that will see plenty of big projects being undertaken in Kuala Lumpur in the next five years.

 

The five-year plan

The government announced last week (Thursday September 10th) that it is planning to transform the Malaysian construction industry by 2020. The plan aims to improve the sector in a range of areas, including safety and professionalism, quality, environmental sustainability, and productivity and internationalisation.

According to prime mininster Najib Tun Razak, the new Construction Industry Transformation Programme (CITP) will include 18 different initiatives within the four main areas. These will aim to improve the image of the construction industry on a local and international scale.

One of the main areas the CITP will focus on will be the implementation of a Quality Assessment System in Construction (QLASSIC) in a bid to measure quality within the sector. As part of the plan, the QLASSIC will be mandatory for all government construction projects by 2018.

Stricter regulations will also be introduced to ensure health and safety in a bid to reduce accidents and injuries during projects. This will include ensuring that all contractors bidding for projects account for the extra costs needed to meet with health and safety requirements in their estimates, said Mr Najib.

In a bid to make Malaysia a model for the construction industry elsewhere, a Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Construction is also set to be established. The CITP will also push to improve productivity and bring Malaysian construction in line with the sector in China, Australia and the US, which will mean plenty of opportunities for international suppliers. New, recently announced projects are going to help drive this even more.

 

A new district in Kuala Lumpur

One of the new projects recently announced that will help to boost output and the construction industry as a whole is the new district being built in Kuala Lumpur. The city is already known for its hyper-modern architecture and huge shopping centres, but it is also aiming to become renowned for its nightlife, as a whole new district is being designed to house clubs and evening entertainment venues.

The TREC (Taste, Relish, Experience, Celebrate) project is a purpose-built nightlife complex that is being designed by architect firms Veritas and Unit One. It will involve five different concept zones in the city centre, spanning across seven acres, with each zone having its own style and mood.

The TREC centre will house a range of entertainment options, including fine dining, cafes, pubs and bars. It will also feature green spaces and water fountains, as is typical of modern Malaysian architecture.

The first phase of the project, Electric Boulevard, launched back in July, with its main draw being the nightclub Zouk, which has a new 60,000 sq ft premises at TREC. It includes a rooftop deck, several clubs, VIP area and a garden. With the range of schemes starting in Malaysia at the moment and the government's plan looking set to improve the industry further, there are plenty of opportunities in the country for international firms.


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