MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT
Since the incorporation the Federation eight years ago, it has established itself as the pre-eminent organization representing the interests of the all the Electrical and Mechanical contracting trades in Hong Kong. The Federation advises government on policy issues related to our industry, and our representatives sit on the relevant Government and non-government advisory boards and committees with the aim of enhancing standards on quality, safety, and environment; including energy efficiency and climate change. The Federation had also strengthened its effort in training of members and community services. Together with the Hon Abraham Razack, Hong Kong Contractors Association, Hong Kong Construction Sub-contractors Association and Hong Kong Construction Employees General Union, we had formed recently the
Construction Charity Fund which will provide some relief to the distressed families of construction workers.
During this period, we have witnessed the downturn of the economy with the financial tsunami in 2008 which further depressed the market. The confrontational politics is not conducive to business confidence, nor helpful for the government and private sector developers to push ahead with new projects.
Depressed market, weakening Hong Kong dollar, wide fluctuation of commodity and material prices, stiff contract conditions, inequitable payment terms, and increasing and often unreasonable demands gave E&M contractors added risks. The Federation had taken actions and would continue with its effort in the coming years to assist member companies to overcome these problems.
Other challenges facing our industry are many and they include but not limiting to the need to revamp specifications and approval procedures for design and build contracts to engender a better partnership spirit; stiff contract conditions, inequitable payment terms, security for payments, and qualifications to practice and trade in the Mainland. The Federation will continue with itˇ¦s efforts in the coming years to assist members to mitigate these difficulties.
Environmental issues such as climate change are high on the political, social and economic agenda of many economies and there is no exception for Hong Kong. These impose challenges and offer opportunities for our member in energy conservation and energy efficiency. It is believed that the Conference on ˇ§The Road to a Green Futureˇ¨ is first of an educational programme to afford members the opportunity to learn and to share with view in developing Hong Kong into a low carbon economy.
To mark its 8th anniversary, the Hong Kong Federation of Electrical and Mechanical Contractors hosted in early December 2009 an enjoyable and successful celebration dinner attended by Legislative Council Representatives, Secretary for Development, Directors of Government Departments and Presidents and Chairmen of professional bodies and trade association. It was a good occasion to network with all relevant stakeholders. Members can expect to hold similar events more frequently than in the past.
In closing, I would like thank the six constituent Associations and all Council Members for the contribution and support. I look forward to working closely with you in the coming two years.
Ir Otto Poon, BBS, OBE, FHKIE