Media Statement By Chong Chieng Jen:
I call upon the State Government to allow contractors awarded with State Government construction works in the last two years to revise upward their awarded contract prices so as to cater to the huge increase in the prices of construction materials.
In the last 1 year, the prices of construction material have increased tremendously, steel prices have almost doubled. Even the prices of locally produced cement, sand and gravels have increased. The industrial diesel prices have also doubled compared to a year ago.
As a result, almost all contractors who have been awarded construction contracts 6 months or earlier find it impossible to continue with the contract work without making huge losses. As a result, many contractors could not afford to proceed with the works.
In dealing with such problem, the Federal Ministry of Works have on 1st May, 2022, issued a directive allowing the contractors undertaking federal projects to review their contract price upward to cater to the increase in prices of building materials.
Unfortunately, so far, no such directive was issued by the State Government.
Though many GPS ADUNs in their debate in DUN have urged the government to blacklist these contractors and punish them. I DO NOT AGREE WITH THEIR STAND. The sudden surge in the price of building material is something that is beyond the control of these contractors.
Furthermore, given that all of us have suffered for 2 years of the Covid 19 pandemic and the State’s economy is still slow to recover, these contractors should be given a second chance. To blacklist them at this time will have a far-reaching adverse effect on the State’s economy as a whole, slowing down our recovery.
Therefore, I urge the State Government to emulate the Federal Government’s policy and allow our contractors to review upward their contract price with the State Government so that the projects may be completed and they in turn can contribute to our State’s economic recovery.
Chong Chieng Jen
ADUN for Padungan