The government hopes that by 2012, half of the projects in the country will use the Industrialised Building System (IBS) technology to enhance productivity.

Currently, less than 25 per cent of construction projects in Malaysia are carried out using the IBS.

The government will introduce incentives to boost the use of IBS in projects.  These include fast lane approval for projects and providing bigger areas for development apart from the existing incentives (Tax incentive was offered through Accelerated Capital Allowance (ACA)) introduce in 2006 and exemption of the construction levy (CIDB levy – 0.125 % of total cost of the project according to Article 520) as an incentive on contractors that used IBS at least 50% IBS components in construction of new buildings since 1st January 2007.

Generally, there are four types of building systems currently available in Malaysia according to Badir-Razali building system classification (Badir et al. 1998), namely conventional, cast in-situ, prefabricated and composite building systems.  Each building system is represented by its respective construction method which is further characterised by its construction technology, functional and geometrical configuration.

Successful IBS implementations in the world are Sekisui Home (Japan), Living Solution (United Kingdom), Open House (Sweden) and Wenswonen (Netherlands).

IBS in Malaysia has begun in early 1960’s when Ministry of Housing and Local Government of Malaysia started first project on IBS, aims to speed up the delivery time and built affordable and quality houses. An are about 22.7 acres of land along Jalan Pekeliling, Kuala Lumpur was dedicated to the project comprising seven blocks of 17 stories flat of 3,000 units of low-cost flat and 40 shops lot (Kamar, Alshawi and Hamid, 2009).

The current IBS systems used in Malaysia housing projects are large panel systems, metal form systems and modular system. The IBS system is largely used in Shah Alam, Wangsa Maju and Pandan area (Swee in Sarja, 1998).

In large public and private buildings and infrastructure projects, pre-cast panel, steel frame and other IBS systems were used as hybrid construction technique to build national landmarks such as Bukit Jalil Sport Complex, Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre, Lightweight Railway Train (LRT) and Petronas Twin Towers (Kamar, Alshawi and Hamid, 2009).

IBS is a construction process that uses techniques, products, components or building systems which involve prefabricated components and on-site installation.

The use of IBS assures the reduction of unskilled workers, less wastage and volume of building materials, increased environmental and construction site cleanliness and better quality control.

IBS is not new to the construction industry. Only it has now re-emerged worldwide into the 21st century as a plausible solution to improve construction image and performance.


(this article written for 1BINA.my)