HONG KONG, Jan. 8, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — RICS (The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors) hosted the Asia Construction Conference 2016 at Cordis Hong Kong today. Distinguished speakers of the Conference included Ir Hon Chi-Keung, JP, Permanent Secretary for Development (Works) and Ms Christine Loh Kung-Wai, JP, Under-Secretary for the Environment from the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Government, and also renowned speakers from Shanghai and Singapore. The Conference addressed a wide range of hot topics affecting development of Asia’s built environment. Over 200 participants engaged actively in discussions covering competitiveness in infrastructure projects, rising construction costs, carbon emission, and listing BIM as the new standard for the construction industry.

Construction costs are rising continuously on a global scale. With rapid growth in infrastructure development, Asia is currently faced with challenges as a result of surging costs. Ir Hon Chi-Keung, JP, Permanent Secretary for Development (Work) of HKSAR Government, said in his opening speech titled "Hong Kong’s capacity in delivering the capital works programme", "While we are propelling the development of Hong Kong, local construction industry is faced with unprecedented challenges.  The recent escalation of construction costs will affect the financial sustainability and the shortage of manpower caused decline in productivity.  The Government will promote to strengthen cost control in the industry and enhance training to cope with manpower shortages."

The United Nations hosted the climate change conference (COP 21) in Paris in December 2015, during which the Global Alliance for Building and Construction (GABC) was formed by various countries with the goal of forming a carbon emission reduction plan for the building and construction industry. RICS, being the initiating member in the capacity of global professional body, emphasized the reduction of carbon emissions during this Asia Construction Conference 2016. Ms Christine Loh Kung-Wai, JP, Under-Secretary for the Environment of HKSAR Government, presented  "Energy Saving Plan for Hong Kong’s Built Environment 2015-2025+", saying, "We have a four-prong approach to promoting energy saving through economic, regulatory, education and social mobilization means. Thus, apart from providing incentives and using the law to promote change, we are also engaging stakeholders and the public to change behaviour. Our energy saving efforts are critical to also meeting our climate change goals. You will see a lot of activities in 2016 from the government."

Mr Tony Ho, RICS East Asia Managing Director said, "As a leading global real estate professional body, RICS has been advocating the highest professional qualifications and standards as always. To tackle challenges and meet low carbon emission targets, RICS and our members will continue to work hand-in-hand with different stakeholders with an aim to enhance competitiveness and promote sustainable development for the industry as a whole."

About RICS

Confidence through Professional Standards

RICS promotes and enforces the highest professional qualifications and standards in the development and management of land, real estate, construction and infrastructure. Our name promises the consistent delivery of standards – bringing confidence to the markets we serve.

We accredit 118,000 professionals and any individual or firm registered with RICS is subject to our quality assurance. Their expertise covers property, asset valuation, real estate management; the development of infrastructure; and the management of natural resources, such as mining, farms and woodland. From environmental assessments and building controls to negotiating land rights in an emerging economy; if our members are involved the same professional standards and ethics apply.

We believe that standards underpin effective markets. With up to seventy per cent of the world’s wealth bound up in land and real estate, our sector is vital to economic development, helping to support stable, sustainable investment and growth around the globe.

With offices covering the major political and financial centres of the world, our market presence means we are ideally placed to influence policy and embed professional standards. We work at a cross-governmental level, delivering international standards that will support a safe and vibrant marketplace in land, real estate, construction and infrastructure, for the benefit of all.

We are proud of our reputation and work hard to protect it, so clients who work with an RICS professional can have confidence in the quality and ethics of the services they receive.

About RICS Asia

RICS Asia supports a network of over 20,000 individual professionals across the Asia region with an objective to help develop the land, property and construction markets in these countries, by introducing professional standards, best practice education and training. We promote RICS and our members as the natural advisors on all property matters. We also ensure that services and career development opportunities are provided to members.

RICS Asia region serves local member associations located in Brunei, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, The People’s Republic of China, Hong Kong SAR, Taiwan and South Korea. It also has members working across the region such as Bangladesh, Bhutan, Burma/Myanmar, Cambodia, Indonesia, Kiribati, Laos PDR, Macao SAR, Mongolia, Nepal, North Korea, The Maldives, The Philippines, Timor East and Vietnam. For more information, please visit: www.rics.org.

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