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New building contract available for Private Sector Contracts

Jointly published by the Construction Industry Federation, Engineers Ireland and the Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland

Better management of risk and improved transparency around project costs, are some of the benefits of a new form of contract suitable for use in private sector construction works and now available for use by Ireland’s construction industry. Entitled: Private Sector Contract (PSC) for Building and Engineering Works designed by the Employer, this new contract and its associated Form of Agreement and Schedule were jointly launched and published this morning by its three sponsoring organisations, the Construction Industry Federation (CIF), Engineers Ireland and the Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland, (SCSI). The new contract is suitable for all medium to large-scale building or civil engineering works here in Ireland, where the design of the project has been provided by the employer, i.e. the client.

The new Conditions of Contract have been drafted with the objective of achieving a fair and balanced allocation of risk between the parties in order to promote long-term sustainable efficiency in the Irish construction industry.  Specifically, risk has generally been allocated to the party best able to bear and manage it.

Commenting this morning on a joint CIF, Engineers Ireland, SCSI webinar, to launch the new contract, Chair of the project’s Standing Committee, Chartered Engineer, Ciarán Fahy, said: “Successful building projects are those which are delivered to the required quality standards, on time, safely and within budget. Choosing an appropriate contract is an important part of this process.  The purpose of this new contract is to further support our construction industry, both builders and their employers/clients. It is our collective view that this new contract will provide greater clarity around all stages of the process, help reduce time at the negotiation stage and provide a sound base for a project’s success.”

Tom Parlon, Director General of the CIF, said: “We have all published this contract, as collectively we wanted to ensure that a more accessible form of contract was available for users who are working on medium to large construction contracts in the private sector, and where the employer has the responsibility for the design.  This contract aims to achieve a fair and balanced allocation of risk between the employer and their contractor.”

Maurice Buckley, President of Engineers Ireland, said: “Engineers Ireland has a long history of publishing conditions of contract for construction work going back to 1959 and we are pleased to have collaborated with the CIF and SCSI to publish this new contract which will be very much welcomed by our members who work in the construction industryThe contract should be particularly useful for medium to large- scale construction projects where the employer wishes to retain design responsibility.” Maurice Buckley added: “ I would also like to take this opportunity on behalf of the three organisations involved, to thank the Chair of the project’s Standing Committee, Ciarán Fahy, for the expertise that he has brought to bear on the project and his dedication to this initiative. I would also like to thank the Committee for all of its work to date.”

Shirley Coulter, CEO of the SCSI, said: “Prospective employers who wish to employ contractors to undertake private sector building or civil engineering work have traditionally had a limited choice in terms of standard forms of contract, which can lead to unnecessary resource expenditure. We believe that this document will also lead to a significant saving for the employer involved.”

The online webinar launch was jointly organised by the three sponsoring bodies to ensure the Conditions of Contract and its accompanying Agreement form and Schedule were made available and accessible. The launch also included brief presentations on some aspects of the new form of contract from engineers and other construction professionals – John Curtin, Ciarán Fahy, Conor Hogan and Anthony Hussey all of whom were involved in the drafting of the new documents. Éamonn Conlon, a solicitor, arbitrator and ADR practitioner in independent practice made a presentation on how the new form of contract compares with other widely used forms.

This Conditions of Contract, together with ancillary and related documents, is being made available free of charge in electronic form only by its three sponsoring organisations, CIF, Engineers Ireland and SCSI. Links are below to their websites.  It uses as a template, the Government’s Public Works form of contract (PWC) and the use of this is gratefully acknowledged.  While numerous amendments have been made to the original template, the structure and format of the PWC has been retained and, hopefully, this will allow for ease of use.

The document published today comprises of three elements: Form of AgreementConditions of Contract and Schedule. They are available on the following websites and are free of charge to download:


Engineers Ireland –


The three sponsoring bodies have established a Standing Committee, chaired by Ciarán Fahy, Fellow of Engineers Ireland, which is to be responsible for the management and maintenance of this, and any ancillary or related, document. It is intended these documents will be updated on a regular basis.

The Construction Industry Federation is the national and regional representative body for construction industry employers in Ireland. It is recognised by Government and public bodies across the country as the representative body and voice of the construction industry and a Social Partner.

With over 25,000 members, Engineers Ireland is the voice of the engineering profession in Ireland. The organisation is one of the largest professional bodies in the country. Members come from every discipline of engineering and range from engineering students to fellows of the profession.

The Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland is the independent professional body for Chartered Surveyors working and practicing in Ireland. Its members are typically employed throughout the construction, land and property sectors.

For further information please contact:

CIF – Shane Dempsey, 087 9884465

Engineers Ireland – Michelle Hoctor/Anne Marie Clarke, 087 1420798/087 3387948 

SCSI – Kieran Garry, 01 644 5517

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