'Earn Respect Now and Make Friends for Life' Now Is the Time for the Construction Industry to Show Aptitude and Maximise the Presence of Welsh Companies, Says Huw Jones, Chairman of CECA Wales
THE construction industry is facing its worse downturn in living memory, and CECA Wales member companies have been at the forefront of a survival exercise over the last 12 to 18 months.
Survival is imperative as it is recognised that the construction industry will be fundamental in restoring the economic health and well-being of Wales and the UK as a whole.
Within the construction industry, the civil engineering sector has a vital role to play, and governments and other clients alike will expect it to show leadership and act responsibly in its delivery to the communities that eagerly await new and improved road and rail infrastructure, renewed water and sewerage facilities, additional flood relief features, reclaimed land, sustainable energy and many other areas of activity.
It is a proud sector in Wales, with many of the 45 companies that are represented by CECA Wales having strong family links to the communities that they operate within, and many of those smaller companies having provided the backbone to the economic well being of those communities for several generations.
Clients and communities alike expect the civil engineering sector, on its behalf, to deliver quality products on time and to budget; they also expect opportunities for employment and more so the opportunity to bring new entrants into the many trades and professions operating within the sector; and respecting the environment is a pre-requisite for the establishment of good working relationships between the stakeholders and the regulators alike.
Companies nevertheless have to earn respect, and as the current Chairman of CECA Wales, Huw Jones, of Jones Brothers Ruthin (Civil Engineering) Ltd, said in his inaugural speech "... there is no more challenging a time for demonstrating our aptitude and attitude towards client and paymaster, and indeed society as a whole, than the present. If we earn respect during these times of adversity, then we will have friends for life".
With the press, the trade journals and the internet all bringing their daily accounts of companies folding, of banks tightening their requirements prior to lending money, of programmes being delayed or deleted, of redundancy notices being served on long serving staff, it is inevitable that a sense of gloom and despair haunts the civil engineering sector at the present time.
However, CECA Wales, the single, wholly representative body (or trade organisation) for construction companies in the civil engineering sector in Wales, lobbies hard on behalf of its member companies, and provides a wealth of information in relation to the state of the industry, tendering opportunities, employment, taxation and health and safety advice, and generally seeks to ensure that they are the best informed and best prepared in knowledge and action, particularly as and when the recession recedes. …