Tragedies spark Ghanaian discovery mission to Southeast Asia

A delegation of Ghanaian government officials and construction professionals have embarked on a mission to Malaysia and Singapore to gather ideas for improving and regulating Ghana’s booming construction industry.

The 13-member, cross-disciplinary mission led by the Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB) in Ghana will meet with regulatory bodies and visit building sites in the Southeast Asian countries.

The initiative comes as a result of recent building collapses in Ghana, including the collapse of the six-storey Melcom shopping centre in Accra in November 2012 which killed 14 people and injured more than 60 others.

The Ghanaian economy is booming, with GDP growth recorded at 14.4% in 2011, according to the World Bank.

The growth has led to concerns that Ghana’s construction industry needs standards and better regulations to keep pace with the rapid pace of building.

"We cannot continue in our old ways and the time to act is now," chairman of CIOB Ghana, Rockson Dogbegah, told Ghana’s official news agency, GNA.

The delegation includes representatives from the ministries of water, works and housing, roads and highways and trade and industry, plus representatives from professional institutions for planners, architects, and surveyors.

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