Ghana Building Code in the offing – Okyere Baafi
THE government has deployed the Ghana Building Code, developed by the Ghana Standards Authority (GSA), to affirm its commitment to partnering with technical institutions to ensure that buildings, roads and other infrastructural projects were constructed in accordance with the highest standards.
A deputy Minister of Trade and Industry, Michael Okyere Baafi, said while the government had outlined a number of initiatives to help boost businesses in the construction industry, it also wanted to ensure that the industry was well regulated to adhere to best global practices.
Speaking at a construction technologies workshop held at the Regional Water and Environmental Sanitation Centre (RWESCK) at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) in Kumasi last Friday, Mr Baafi said the government recognised the role of institutional partnerships in coming up with policies and directives that would improve the building and construction industry.
As a result, he said the government was seeking more collaborations with industry players and technical institutions to enhance the sector’s development.
"The government, through the Ministry of Trade & Industry, stands ready to assist businesses and local manufacturers in the construction industry by creating a conducive environment and developing testing facilities to help enhance their production and stay profitable," he said.
He, however, encouraged stakeholders to involve themselves in policy-making processes to contribute to the development of the sector.
The Director-General of the GSA, Professor Alex Dodoo, said the new GSA law mandated it to collaborate with academia and industry to design standards that will help improve the construction industry, hence, the workshop.
"Our new law is clear that we have to undertake and encourage academic work in connection with standardisation.
We are undertaking and encouraging educational work in connection with standardisation, establishing laboratories and other facilities to promote research and provide for examination, testing and certification of goods, services, processes and systems," he said.
Prof. Dodoo further encouraged stakeholders in the sector to approach the GSA and make use of the Ghana Building Code, in order to help mitigate the effects of earthquakes and other natural disasters, should they occur.
“In the wake of earthquakes and earth tremors being experienced in parts of the world, it is important that we come together and ensure that standards in the construction industry are strictly adhered to.
“The GSA, with support from the government and the engineering community, has come up with a comprehensive building code which contains all the tools and directions on how buildings, roads and other infrastructure should be constructed.
The construction sector is ready to take off in Ghana and the Ghana Building Code creates opportunities for the industry to collaborate and build the country we want,” he added.
A Senior Researcher at the Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing – Germany (BAM), Dr Wolfram Schmidt, in a presentation, highlighted the future developments in cement and concrete technologies.
He noted that his outfit was ready to collaborate with Ghana’s construction industry to find sustainable, effective and alternative materials for construction.
The workshop, held under the theme "Facilitating the Implementation of Science-Based Sustainable Construction Technologies", was organised as part of an ongoing Institutional Partnership Agreement between the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MoTI), and the Ghana Standards Authority (GSA), with the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action (BMWK) and the Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM) of the Federal Republic of Germany.