Construction World

Motheo Construction Group is ‘heartened’ by the finding in ‘The Future of Infrastructure’ report launched by integrated infrastructure delivery company AECOM at the 2018 World Economic Forum in Davos in January that adequate investment in infrastructure projects is crucial to national prosperity.

Motheo Construction Group CEO Dr Thandi NdlovuMotheo Construction Group CEO, Dr. Thandi Ndlovu.

The inaugural report, which surveyed over 500 professionals worldwide, outlines the issues faced in delivering infrastructure projects, as well as promoting solutions such as the integrated delivery model for Africa in particular. 

AECOM cited funding shortages as the main reason for infrastructure backlogs in areas such as Africa.

While Design, Build, Finance and Operate (DBFO) is perceived as a preferred global project-delivery model, not all of these boxes can be ticked in an African context. “We cannot necessarily bring the financing, operations, or building side to bear on all projects,” Darrin Green, Managing Director for Civil infrastructure at AECOM, comments.

“However, we are engaged in very deliberate partnering with select contractors and financiers. That is the way things are going, with clients increasingly looking for a ‘one-stop shop’ for infrastructure delivery,” Green notes.

Civils MD Archie RutherfordCivils MD Archie Rutherford.

Civils MD Archie Rutherford stresses that companies like Motheo Construction Group is best positioned to collaborate with other major players in terms of promoting the integrated delivery model in an African context.

He points to the company’s newly-established partnership with WBHO in its commitment to the Voluntary Rebuilding Programme (VRP). “This is coupled with our status as a Black Women Owned, CIDB Level 9 contractor, which enhances our ability to deliver on the holistic infrastructure solutions that are so essential for the continent’s development.”

Motheo Construction Group was one of three major black-owned contractors to have signed a development agreement with WBHO in terms of the VRP, concluded with the government in October 2016. “We see this as a transformative milestone in the construction sector, and an excellent way forward for our companies and consortium members,” CEO Dr. Thandi Ndlovu said at the official signing ceremony.

Speaking at the Infrastructure Africa Business Forum last year, South African Minister of Trade and Industry Dr. Rob Davies said infrastructure development was a fundamental catalyst for increased inter-regional trade and industrialisation. “Infrastructure development is at the heart of our efforts to promote high levels of inclusive growth and development throughout the continent.”

It is estimated that Africa has an infrastructure deficit at present of $93 billion a year for the next 20 years. This was exacerbated by the fact that Africa was losing over 40% of its competitiveness due to a lack of infrastructure, or the inefficiency of existing infrastructure.

Agenda 2063, which represents the vision of the African Union (AU) for unity, self-determination, and collective prosperity, is a shared framework for inclusive growth and sustainable development to be achieved by 2063. The idea was mooted at the 50th anniversary of the Organisation of African Unity, and ratified in 2015.

“It is the AU’s plan for the socio-economic transformation of the continent over the next 50 years, and includes the AU’s infrastructure plan to expedite Africa’s build programmes,” Infrastructure Africa MD Liz Hart elaborated.

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