In search of Australian construction competitive advantages in South East Asia

  • Yong Hai (Joel) Lim

    Student thesis: Coursework Masters - CDU


    Much has been published that is now out of date concerning the state of the construction industry in South East Asia. This proposed report draws together more recent data of both a primary and secondary nature with a view to establishing a current analysis of the South East Asian construction market.

    The purpose of this study is not currency to currency's sake but to allow a modest start to be made in identifying a possible competitive advantage that may be developed and built upon by Australian construction industry companies wanting to compete in the South East Asian market.

    To accomplish this research objective, the author has reviewed literature that is specific both to the South East Asian arena and the construction industry and extract pertinent economic data from a variety of sources devoted more generally from Australian owned construction companies operating in South East Asian countries with mailed questionnaires and on the spot structured interviews.

    The study goes on to suggest that the technological expertise of Australian companies is also marketed by construction companies from other developed countries and does not constitute a competitive advantage.

    However, the mistakes of overseas companies in moving into South East Asia are almost all of a cultural nature and suggest that competitive advantage may be obtained by the judicious use of South East Asian immigrants who have found work with Australian construction companies operating in South East Asia and are able to bridge the significant cultural gap and at the same time entertain the local requirement.

    This potential competitive advantage has not been exploited to the full and constitutes a mixed opportunity.

    Commonly, in most research projects, it is a norm that conclusions are not known at the outset of the report and questions raised in the initial progress of this exercise often ended up to be less practical than questions identified at the end with the benefits of hindsight. Hence, this research study is no exception and is part of a learning mode to allow the author to understand the benefits of research and is recommended that areas lacked of information and data require further examination.
    The evidence which by no means conclusive suggests that the reported decline in investment levels since the heady days of the '90s does not appear to have significantly affected the construction industry where the need for infrastructure is fully recognised by governments and companies operating in the market have not experienced difficulty in raising funds.
    Date of Award1997
    Original languageEnglish

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