Skilled workers in short supply in Hong Kong's construction industry

A lot of infrastructure, such as the West Kowloon terminus of the high-speed rail line from Guangzhou, is being built. Photo: Bloomberg

Strong investment on the mainland and in Macau and a large amount of infrastructure work in Hong Kong have resulted in a growing shortage of suitably skilled labour and professional talent in Hong Kong's construction industry.

Wednesday, 19 March, 2014, 5:01am

Work on Guangzhou Metro Line 6 destroys five ancient tombs

Guangzhou Metro is facing a public outcry after contractors destroyed five ancient tombs during construction of Line 6 of its subway system. Photo: Xinhua

The protected site, on the eastern slope of Da Gong mountain, had been sealed off by the Guangzhou Archaeology Research Centre, with warning signs posted and red lines marking the protected area.

17 Jun 2013 - 5:51am 5 comments

West Kowloon project will need more finance, says arts hub chief

Michael Lynch

Rising construction costs have put pressure on the West Kowloon arts hub and it will need more financing in the future, its chief says. Michael Lynch has admitted that may mean changing construction plans.

3 Jun 2013 - 7:29am 5 comments

China environment ministry accused of passing buck on project approvals

Pan Yue, Deputy minister of the Ministry of Environmental Protection. Photo: Reuters

The environment ministry is planning to hand many of its approval powers over industrial projects to local governments, a move it says is aimed at reducing regulatory interference.

3 Jun 2013 - 7:52am 1 comment

China's construction giants cut down to size in foreign projects

Citic Pacific's iron ore handling facilities in Western Australia. The project is three years behind schedule.

China's state-backed construction firms have earned an enviable reputation for their competitiveness in delivering huge infrastructure projects on time and under budget at home. But that reputation has taken a battering abroad thanks to two high-profile failures.

13 May 2013 - 5:35am 3 comments

The shame of Sichuan's tofu schools

Tang Yulan, 40, weeps amid the ruins of Beichuan Middle School, a month after losing her only daughter in the 2008 Sichuan earthquake. About 4,700 schoolchildren died when more than 7,000 schools collapsed. Photo: Ricky Chung

Five years after the deadly earthquake in Wenchuan, Sichuan, dozens of parents are still seeking justice for children who died when their shoddily built schools collapsed. Other families, however, have abandoned their struggle over the years, under immense pressure from the government.

6 May 2013 - 12:07pm 3 comments

Water officials go online to expose shoddy work on dam in eastern Guangdong

A Chinese engineer, left, walks by a fence with Chinese slogans reading: Safety first, highest quality and quantity near an entrance of a dam construction site in China. Photo: AP

Three water-resources officials in eastern Guangdong have exposed shoddy construction at a key embankment dam project that has seen seven major collapses in the past three years.

3 May 2013 - 6:15am

Chinese bidders on a roll with Asia rail projects

Manila's metro system is expanding and mainland companies are keen for a slice of the action. Inroads have been made into India and Thailand is a key target. Photo: Bloomberg

Chinese companies had expressed interest in winning transport contracts in the Philippines, said Rene Limcaoco, undersecretary of the Philippine Department of Transportation and Communications, at the recent Asia Pacific Rail conference in Hong Kong.

3 May 2013 - 5:14am

Foam, hollowed bricks used in Lushan school construction, reports say

A damaged wall inside Lushan County Junior Secondary School reveals hollowed bricks. Photo: Simon Song

Cracked and peeling walls at Lushan County Junior Secondary School exposed bricks that were either hollow or filled with “polystyrene foam”, party mouthpiece People’s Daily reported on Thursday.

26 Apr 2013 - 4:56am 1 comment

Deadly Sichuan earthquake sparks fresh fears over building quality

Wreckage of damaged houses lie by the side of a street in Longmen township, one of the seriously-damaged towns in disaster-hit Yaan, southwest China's Sichuan province. Photo: AFP

Ma Jun, the government head in Baoxing county, northwest of the epicentre, told Xinhua on Sunday that nearly all the buildings in the county were damaged, including buildings such as schools and hospitals rebuilt after the 8 magnitude quake in 2008.

24 Apr 2013 - 4:30am

Goodman to raise rents in Japan as land, building costs jump

Prices of land sites used for distribution centres and the cost of construction, which has increased as much as 20 per cent, are making development more expensive. Photo: Bloomberg

Prices of land sites used for distribution centres and the cost of construction, which has increased as much as 20 per cent, are making development more expensive, said Paul McGarry, chief executive officer of Goodman Japan. Even as demand for modern warehouses and investor interest remain strong, the supply of such facilities will be limited, he said.

24 Apr 2013 - 5:20am

Rising number of projects and labour shortage to keep construction costs high

A scaffolder undergoes training. The industry aims to make construction work more attractive to ease labour shortages. Photo: Edward Wong

Construction costs in Hong Kong are expected to rise sharply over the next two to three years because of an increase in infrastructure and residential developments and a shortage of labour.

17 Apr 2013 - 5:31am

Asking prices rise in UK amid shortage of homes on market

New residential property development in London. Photo: Reuters

Prices sought rose 2.1 per cent this month from March to an average £244,706 (HK$2.9 million), the property-website operator said. In London they fell 0.5 per cent. Asking prices increased 6.9 per cent in the first four months of the year and were up 0.4 per cent year on year.

17 Apr 2013 - 5:31am

Socam to cash out China projects

Socam Development's Four Seasons Place Pudong in Shanghai. The property developer plans to aggressively cash in its mainland properties.

Property developer and contractor Socam Development will aggressively cash in its mainland properties and pursue opportunities in Hong Kong's expanded building programme for public housing and infrastructure.

28 Mar 2013 - 6:31am

High stakes involved in Shenzhen's concrete scandal

Recent reports of some property developers using unsuitable materials for construction in Shenzhen have rung the alarm bells over building and public safety.

Over the past two decades, Shenzhen has awed many with its construction prowess, building upwards and sideways at jaw-dropping speed and scale. But recently, reports of some property developers using unsuitable materials for construction have rung the alarm bells over building and public safety. Urgent investigation is needed.

20 Mar 2013 - 3:11am