Hamilton City Council Chief Executive Richard Briggs says the recently-formed Construction Sector Accord is moving rapidly to transform an industry which provides work for nearly 250,000 people and contributes around $15 billion to the New Zealand economy each year.
Mr Briggs, representing the local government sector, has been appointed to the Steering Group of the Accord and joins around 24 sector leaders to oversee a transformation plan and drive progress.
New Zealand’s construction sector but is facing challenges that compromise its ability to keep pace with the country’s growing needs. The Accord has been formed to address these challenges.
“True transformational change means thinking differently about the way we doing things, creating and fostering trusted partnerships and taking a collective responsibility to disrupt the status quo for the common good,” Mr Briggs says.
“The Accord is based on those principles and I want to acknowledge the commitment to this crucial project by the private sector, local and central government,” Mr Briggs says.
The Accord identified 38 initiatives. Already, 34 of these initiatives are underway and more than 300 people and businesses have signed up to get involved with the Accord programme.
“No single part of the sector can address the issues in the wider ecosystem but a joint acknowledgement of the challenges was a critical first step and, already, we’re making progress,” Mr Briggs says.
Government has committed to the Construction Skills Action Plan to build skills and capacity, and the establishment of the New Zealand Infrastructure Commission to better manage infrastructure development and procurement.
Industry has made an initial commitment to four change initiatives. These will work to improve risk management skills, improve health and safety, assist the government in the Construction Skills Action Plan, mobilise the sector and support the development of a sector transformation plan.
As a high-growth council, Hamilton is positioned to showcase how innovation and a joint commitment to transformation can provide benefits at a local, regional and national level, Mr Briggs says.
Hamilton’s infrastructure growth programme is investing $2 billion over 10 years and is proving a good example of how central and local government, and the construction industry, can partner successfully.
“The Accord is a fantastic opportunity for the sector and one which can realise incredible benefits for New Zealand and our people,” Mr Briggs says.