SUNBIZ

Import Inflation Cause Delay For Local Construction Industry

Construction have started to pick up, but there are still some challenges to overcome.
27 Feb 2022 11:12
Import Inflation Cause Delay For Local Construction Industry
Construction workers working at a site in Suva. Photo: Laiseana Nasiga

Fiji’s construction industry may expect delays in the supply of building materials.

Construction Industry Council president Gordon Jenkins said as a developing country, Fiji’s construction industry relied a lot on imported building materials.

He said as construction have started picking up, there were some challenges to overcome.

Mr Jenkins added that as overseas manufacturing companies were still catching up with orders, Fiji may expect delays.

“Depending on which country, COVID lockdowns and restrictions has caused a backlog of orders to make. So, we will expect more delays and at the same time, prices keep going up. There will be a disruption in the supply chain because of the lockdowns.

“Factories that aimed to meet deadlines were shut for a while. Now they want to catch up therefore we in the developing countries may have to wait awhile for the supply of building materials.

“Prices are also going up which we all know there has been some major leaps in steel and concrete and other building materials. But it is going to get worse. One of the major factors in construction industry in Fiji is that most of the building materials are imported.

So, we have import inflation,” he said.

Construction workers
Adding to this, Mr Jenkins said Fiji may not have enough local construction workers to meet the demand for construction.
He said during the long COVID lockdowns and restrictions in Fiji, construction was temporarily halted which caused an overflow.

“There may not be enough builders able to do the amount of work that is going to come down the line.

There might be an overflow. The industry may get overloaded. That has happened in New Zealand and Australia so it can happen in Fiji as well,” Mr Jenkins said.

Mr Jenkins hopes for more local training to upskill builders to meet this demand in the construction industry.

Feedback: laiseana.nasiga@fijisun.com.fj



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