January 17, 2021

Budget provides opportunity to sustain construction activity, says FMB

The recovery in construction activity reported in today’s (7th January) Construction PMI data can be accelerated if the Government takes decisive action in its March Budget, says the Federation of Master Builders (FMB).

Brian Berry, Chief Executive of the FMB, said: “Today’s data shows the beginning of a recovery in construction, but this is largely being driven by house building. There is certainly a need for more homes but housing targets are unlikely to be met without the creation of a more diverse housing market with more local house builders being able to participate. Financial measures aimed specifically at micro house builders would be a great start to help create a more diverse housing market.”

Mr Berry concluded: “The construction industry has a key role to play in helping to deliver a zero carbon built environment. The Chancellor has an opportunity to support the creation of a national retrofit strategy to upgrade our existing homes. Our homes contribute 20% of all UK carbon dioxide emissions which is why steps need to be taken now to make them greener and more energy efficient. Other measures that would help Britain’s builders include a temporary cut in VAT on home improvements and scraping the introduction of Reverse Charge VAT which will take cash out of the pockets of small businesses when they need it most.”