JOHANNESBURG - The decline in government spending, together with its failure to pay contractors on time or even not at all, are among the main factors contributing to the decline of South Africa’s construction industry, an industry official said on Wednesday.
The government could do more to provide the stimulus the sector desperately needs, said Morag Evans, chief executive of Databuild, a knowledge hub for the construction and related industries which is acknowledged as a key source of intelligence for stakeholders.
"Government can begin by actually spending the funding that has been allocated in the national budget, specifically on new infrastructure such as roads, reservoirs, and low cost housing," Evans said.
"And while priority must also be given to areas such as health and education, hidden within these ministries is the need for the building of new schools, hospitals and clinics."
She said the maintenance of existing infrastructure should also be prioritised, with the large number of government buildings requiring urgent renovation just one example of how numerous construction projects could be generated to provide work for hundreds of people.