Monday, October 17, 2011

Think out of the box to offset rising costs, developers told

BINTULU: Developers have to think out of the box like never before to cushion the impact of the increase in operational cost.

Sarawak Housing and Real Estate Developers’ Association (Sheda) vice-president cum Bintulu branch liaison chairman Troy Yaw Chee Weng said with increase in building materials, labour and other cost, developers and operators must find other ways.

“The cost is escalating and we can’t run away from this fact,” he said at the Sheda Home & Property Roadshow at ParkCity Everly Hotel here.

“Who said a house must have a roof … We have no choice, it’s not an option — we have no choice but to relook into all these new building materials which may be a little bit expensive for now but if you factor in labour and material cost you could save, I think its worth working on it,” he said.

Yaw said Bintulu was blessed with the Samalaju project.

“We are experiencing the third boom in Bintulu. This is all multi-billion dollar business mind-mapping we normally can’t understand, but its happening here.”

He said there were opportunities for the people, especially business players in developing Bintulu town.
There are 200 over Japanese families here and they will be here for many more years to come. It’s about time to think about building quality homes, quality Japanese restaurant, he said.

“The opportunities in Bintulu are enormous over the next five or 10 years and already some contractors are benefiting from the earthwork contracts.

“We are into a very challenging time and into a very exciting period as well and Bintulu will continue to spearhead a better future,” said Yaw.

Bintulu Development Authority as the sole government agency managing the growth of Bintulu has already come up with their master plan, relocating some of the squatters, planning to build thousands of low cost houses and transforming Bintulu into a friendly industrial city by year 2020.

“In the old days, people see Bintulu as a working town. People come here to work but not intending to stay long. Now that is changing; there are opportunities for hotels, homes and apartments. We need to open up our minds,” he stressed.

Sheda has about 13 members in Bintulu and 277 members throughout Sarawak.

“It is our aim to strive to have a good working relationship with the government authority. Over the years we have done just that.

“It does not mean we can overcome all the issues faced by developers in the state; some of it pursued for years without achieving our outcome. But that does not mean we are going to stop,” Yaw said.

He also commented on the statement made by Housing Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg during the opening of Sarbex 2011exhibition in Kuching recently, that it was time to review all government policies to keep up with the times.

“That means he realises rules are made by people and should be amended by people when they become obsolete.

“We are glad to have a minister who is prepared to amend change, regulations stipulated by authority if necessary,” Yaw said.

Also present at the function were Sheda president Zaidi Ahmad, deputy president Joseph Wong Kee Liong and organising chairman Yek Nai Kwong.

Guest of honour BDA general manager Datu Mohidin Ishak was represented by his assistant general manager Pulusagi Tran.