Although there are lots of innovative building technologies out there, the Ghanaian populace has been described as being slow in adapting and skeptical of these revolutionary building technologies.
The Real Estate Developers Association of Ghana believes the refusal of Ghanaians to adapt to new building technologies have become a problem for their members.
Speaking on the increase in prices of construction materials in the country, the Executive Secretary of the Association, Sammy Amegayibor stated, “There are lots of technologies used for building. We have the prefabricated and steel buildings and a host of others. But one problem we face is that our citizens are slow in adapting to new technologies and this has become a problem for estate developers.”
According to him, various samples of these affordable buildings have been constructed but patronage is low. “The potential house owner sees and touches them only to tell you the buildings are hollow and weak.”
In an interview with Samuel Eshun on the Happy Morning Show aired on e.TV Ghana and HappyFM, Sammy Amegayibor charged Ghanaians to understand that buildings made from alternate technology are safe. He believes in the importance of public education on tried and tested building technologies used elsewhere and their adaptability in Ghana “and this can help reduce our problem of high cost in construction materials.”
With environmental protection at heart, he motioned that the adaptation of these new building technologies will reduce the incidence of deforestation. “It is high time for a high level of education in the area of technology for constructing buildings.”
The concerned businessman also encouraged the local construction manufacturing industry to try and be self-sufficient. “Averagely we import 70 percent of the components we use in manufacturing these construction materials. It is high time we start developing most of the building materials and components needed for their production locally. That is what we need to start looking at for the long term.”
The construction industry in Ghana has seen an exponential rise in the cost of building materials over the past few months and this has raised concerns in the country.
Ghana’s Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia however has blamed the 650% hike in shipping cost from Asia for rising cost of building materials.
Addressing members of the construction industry on Friday, September 10, at the maiden edition of Ghana Construction Industry Excellence Awards, Dr. Bawumia, while commending the immense contribution of Ghanaian contractors to the development of the country, also highlighted the devastating impact global factors arising out of the covid-19 pandemic has had on their operations, especially cost of construction materials.
The Vice President, however, added that despite the remarkable economic management like the general economy, the growth of the construction industry has been severely impacted by the globally hit COVID-19 pandemic, with global factors affecting prices of materials such as iron rods and cement locally.
“The growth and vibrancy of the construction industry depends on the growth and vibrancy of the economy as a whole. This is why economic management is key, the economic indicators of our first term in office tell a story of competent economic management. However, the world has suffered a global recession; in fact, it is the worst global recession since 1945, as a result of Covid-19, which hit us high in 2020.”
“Throughout the world, prices of goods have shot up. The shipping cost of containers, from China to Europe have increased from around $2000 Dollars in August last year, to $13,000 Dollars now per container – a 650% increase. You also have major goods that have gone up as a result of Covid and all of you in the construction industry know that the world prices for cement and for iron rods have really shot up. So when we see same things happening in Ghana, we know why it is happening. It is a global phenomenon as a result of the pandemic.”
Dr. Bawumia assured the contractors that just as the government prudently managed the economy prior to Covid-19 devastating it, the government is on course to manage the impact of Covid on the economy and local industries, including the construction sector.