KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 17: Malaysian construction firms must work towards becoming regional and global construction and engineering giants, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.
Najib said this was to ensure that they could compete with other leading construction firms like Bechtel of US, Hyundai and Daewoo of South Korea, Skanska of Sweden and JGC of Japan.
“Malaysian construction companies need to expand their capabilities, which include the company’s size, project management skills, specialist technology expertise level, company’s branding and reputation and their networks.
“If the Japanese and South Korean construction companies can do it, I believe so can Malaysian firms,” he said at the UEM Group Bhd’s 50th Anniversary Stakeholders’ Appreciation Dinner here on Thursday.
At the event, UEM Group pledged to develop 40 more Bumiputera vendors between 2017 and 2020.
“This is in addition to its current 51 as part of the Bumiputera Vendor Development Programme it signed with International Trade and Industry Ministry (MITI),” said Group Chairman Tan Sri Dr Ahmad Tajuddin Ali.
In 2014, UEM Group signed a memorandum of understanding with MITI to become one of the anchor companies entrusted with providing opportunities to develop Bumiputera vendors in the property development, expressway and facilities maintenance sectors.
Ahmad Tajuddin said the company has long been supportive of Bumiputera vendors where more than RM5.0 billion worth of contracts had been awarded by the group and its subsidiaries from 2011 to 2016.
“We don’t only provide business opportunities to these vendors but we also hold them to the highest standards of performance such as Business Excellence initiative thus creating truly global players.
“The results are already starting to show with three Bumiputera companies under our guidance recently making it to the final round of the Industry Excellence Awards organised by MITI,” he said.
The three companies are Primelux Energy Sdn Bhd, MKRS Bumi (M) Sdn Bhd and Medical Apparatus Supplies Sdn Bhd.
The group, through its four core businesses — expressways; township and property development; engineering and construction; and, asset and facility management — aims to grow the Bumiputera vendors’ expertise in the higher value facets of the supply chain.–Bernama