KUCHING, June 20: Ministry of Works has allocated an additional RM782 million for Federal road maintenance across the country, activating the Highway Privatization Committee to review the direction of private initiative projects, implement new project proposals and quick-win projects under the infrastructure cluster.
According to Senior Minister of Work (Infrastructure Cluster) Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof, the ministry is also reviewing the implementation method of the Pan Borneo Highway and road development projects in Sabah and Sarawak and is re-activating the ‘Zero Potholes’ vows involving all the District Public Works Department (JKR) Engineers.
Fadillah said this in a statement on June 19, in response to his 100th days in office as the Senior Minister of Works (Infrastructure Cluster) and also as one of the chairmen for the Joint Committee on Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63).
Meanwhile, six ministries have been placed under the Infrastructure Cluster to resolve issues relating to cross-ministries and government agencies.
These include the Ministry of Works, Ministry of Transport, Ministry of Environment and Water, Ministry of Housing and Local Government, Ministry of Rural Development and Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation.
Fadillah will be responsible for chairing the Ministerial Meeting for Infrastructure Cluster, while the Infrastructure Cluster Working Committee meeting is chaired by the Secretary-General to the Ministry of Works.
“The Ministerial Meeting for Infrastructure Cluster is the most crucial meeting for the cluster as it plays a big role in policy-making, planning as well as the development of Malaysia’s infrastructure.
“The meeting also serves as a platform for resolving administrative and management issues across ministries and government agencies,” he said.
Fadillah explained that the cluster system introduced by the government is to coordinate all ministries with the same policy and direction so that no overlap of functions occurs.
He hoped that this system would be more effective and systematically improve its cost-effectiveness of the Government’s service which will ultimately benefit the people.
“The Infrastructure Cluster also has an additional co-opted members involved with the ministries, agencies and parties pertaining to the issues being discussed; which so far has involved the Ministry of Federal Territories, Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources, Ministry of Communications and Multimedia Malaysia and the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission.
“So far we have held two Ministerial-level meetings on April 9 and June 18, 2020,” he said.
Fadillah also said in order to ease the burden of the industry (infrastructure sector) players, the government has introduced several incentives for the contractors to reduce the impact of the Movement Control Order (MCO) due to COVID-19.
He pointed out that this was done through the Economic Recovery Plan (PENJANA) where the incentive includes providing cash flow assistance through SME Bank for G2 and G3 class contractors.
“RM2 billion is allocated for these contractors that were awarded small contracts for the purpose of workforce enhancement programs to increase unemployment as well as utilizing local workers to build new skills such as Building Information Modelling (BIM).
“In addition, there is also a CIDB PRIHATIN INITIATIVE that provides a two-month deferment of levy on private sector projects from January 1 to May 31, 2020, as well as the relaxation of contractor registration requirements by exempting the Continuous Contractor Development for new registration from April to December 2020,” he added. —DayakDaily