Business Unity South Africa Vice President Dean Mogale says that the country cannot afford the mistakes that it is making in terms of the infrastructure challenges.“The construction industry is a substantial driver of economic development and has an effect in a country or region. Fixed infrastructure investment is vital for the country in dealing with issues of globilisation and urbanisation,” Mogale told the Consulting Engineers South Africa (CESA) annual conference held in Durban this week.
The theme of the conference was ‘Unlocking Infrastructure Delivery and Restoring the Ethical Balance in Construction’.
He argued that the current infrastructure is not geared for the influx of people from other parts of South Africa to economic zones like Western Cape and Gauteng as it was disclosed by Census 2011 recently.
“There are significant needs to address the infrastructure requirements, especially by the R3, 2-trillion infrastructure spend. However, an economy based on a stimulus package is narrow minded and not sustainable, it should be what it is, a process just to do that. Greater impetus should be geared forward looking into other markets in Africa.”
Mogale called on the construction industry to stimulate innovation and develop unique South Africa technology solution, despite challenges such as skills and energy shortages.
He sent a stern warning to the Presidential Infrastructure Coordinating Committee that less time should be spent on talking and that the sooner the private sector is engaged on the pertinent issues such as financing of this development, the only development that will be successful would be that of conferences and talk shops around the Presidential Infrastructure development programme.
He added that the industry needs to be in the forefront mobilising the impetus and articulating a need for decisive leadership.
“South Africa needs to get out of this mess and we need to do that better than any. To do that we also we need engineers to stay and develop the country.”
Consulting Engineers South Africa (CESA)
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