CONSTRUCTION is a process that consists of the building or assembling of infrastructure, and in case of large scale construction is a feat of human multitasking. It can be fractioned into four parts, Building construction, Industrial construction, Commercial Building construction and Heavy Civil construction.
The process of construction will initiate from the designing team and then this formal design team may be assembled to plan the physical proceedings, and to integrate those proceedings with the other parts. The design mentioned above will include drawings and specifications, usually prepared by a design team including surveyors, civil engineers, cost engineers (or quantity surveyors), mechanical engineers, electrical engineers, structural engineers, fire protection engineers, planning consultants, architectural consultants, and archaeological consultants.
Similar as many other construction industries in other developing countries, the South African construction industry is also challenged by many systemic problems such as unstable and insecure employment, financial instability, a bias towards urban development, and an erratic approach for the integration of the construction industry within overall government policy.
The South African government has introduced a process to develop an effective strategy for its construction industry within a national agenda of social and economic transformation in order to meet the aim of its Reconstruction and Development Programme.
Both the public and private sectors own construction work projects. But majority of buildings within any country are possessed by the private sector on the other hand the public sector holds the bulk of civil engineering works. However a special team of professional service providers is set up for both buildings and civil engineering works for planning, designing, constructing and maintaining essential resources like finance and funding for projects and much more.
Normally, construction works are developed and maintained through a supply chain, where by a main contractor may subcontract portions of the works to subcontractors for various reasons; and can also contract with:
i) manufacturers and fabricators to provide components, plant or equipment,
ii) service providers to provide a range of services including professional services,
iii) equipment hire firms to hire equipment; and
iv) suppliers to provide consumables incidental to the works and materials for incorporation into the works.
Prerequisites the development of the construction industry:
Construction industry development requires to be driven by a set of objectives or end outcomes at a national level as follows:
1) Enough internal capability to meet the constructing and maintaining construction works demands; and
2) a competitive construction industry which delivers to global standards of performance in terms of quality, productivity, safety, health and the environment.
This involves the development of the entire supply chain across all regions within a country.
Procurement system requirements in South Africa:
The national standards for procurement are ISO/FDIS 10845-2, ISO/FDIS 10845-3 and ISO/DIS 10845-4 in South Africa.
ISO/FDIS 10845-2 sets up at both a main and subcontract level. It is a format for the compilation of calls for expressions of interest and tender and contract documents, as well as creates the general principles for compiling procurement documents.
On the other hand, ISO/FDIS 10845-3 establishes the rules governing the process of offer and acceptance when tenders are invited, while ISO/FDIS 10845-4 establishes the rules governing the processes associated with the registering of interest in undertaking a specific contract or to participate in a project or programme. Both demonstrates standard conditions of tender and standard conditions for the calling for expressions of interest, respectively.
Industry development in South Africa is aimed at establishing an internationally competitive industry, which enables contracting most of the construction projects and export services and products, as well as assuring value for money to industry clients and considering environmental responsibility while executing construction projects.
In recent years, the government has taken a number of economic reforms that has gradually carried on bringing positive economic effects.
The Construction Industry Policy along with the national strategic goals also takes into account the significant role of the other guiding national initiatives including National Poverty Eradication Strategy, Civil Service Reform programme, Parastatal Sector Reform, Private Sector Involvement in Economic Development, Strategic Environmental Sustainability,Gender Issues, Eradication of Diseases and Literacy Campaign and other sectoral development programmes.
The Public and Private Sector’s Expenditure in 2012:
In March 2012, the Private Sector awarded residential contracts worth R105m, with low-income housing amounting to R35m, while the value of residential contracts amounted to R70m. The value of contracts awarded to non-residential buildings by the Private Sector R2,26bn for the month of March 2012 increasing from R1,93bn.
On the other hand, In March 2012, the Public Sector’s construction expenditure in the residential market amounted to R139,1m, with R107,2bn being spent on low-income housing and R31,9m, while for the non-residential sector amounted to R1,5bn.
As per the new energy efficiency building regulations, South Africa’s construction industry are aimimg at a green revolution creating new engineering careers to promote a growing trend of cutting-edge green architecture in the country.
In President Zuma’s state of the union address 5 geographically focussed infrastructure development programmes were listed:
1) Develop and integrate rail, road and water infrastructure centred around the Waterberg andSteelpoort areas of Limpopo, to unlock coal, platinum, palladium, chrome and other minerals.
2) Improve the movement of goods through the Durban Free State Gauteng logistics and industrialcorridor by prioritising a range of rail and port improvements, supported by Transnet over sevenyears.
3) A new ‘South Eastern node’ in the Eastern Cape, to bolster industrial and agriculturaldevelopment and export capacity. Including construction of a dam on the Umzimvubu river anda 16mn tonne/year manganese export channel through the Port of Ngqura.
4) An initiative to expand transport and electricity infrastructure in the north-west of the country,including the upgrading of 10 priority roads.
5) A number of projects on the West Coast, including the expansion of the Sishen-Saldanha ironorecorridor to 100mn tonnes.
As part of the Accelerated and Shared Growth Initiative of South Africa (Asgisa), the government is planning to separate poverty and unemployment by 2014 and also declared that R372-billion would be invested on infrastructure development in the next few years.
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