12 May 2021
The Government has used the Queen's speech to announce several changes, which will impact the construction industry and offer them opportunities to win more work and help the UK build back better.
Richard Beresford, chief executive of the National Federation of Builders (NFB), said: “Changes to procurement, employment, housing, environment and broadband are welcomed, though the devil will always be in the detail.
We will be engaging with the Government on the upcoming bills but also paying close attention to how we progress funding for research and development, skills training, national infrastructure, freeports, climate and even immigration, so we can build back better and progress the levelling up agenda.”
The following commitments were announced in the Queens speech.
- Establishment of a new advance research agency
- New proposals to support jobs following the end of the COVID-19 support packages
- Improving national infrastructure and bringing forward investment in improvements of rail, bus, 5g and gigabit broadband
- Lifestyle skills guarantee with Lifelong Loan Entitlement and 400 free courses are also now available to adults without a full qualification at Level 3
- Laws will simplify procurement in public sector
- 8 new free ports
- New laws for planning, to build more homes and greater measures to help more people to own home.
- Measures to end ground rents for new leasehold properties
- A new building safety regulator
- Green industry investment to create jobs and meet the UKs commitment to net zero GHG emissions by 2050
- New legislation to set new binding environmental targets and introduction of environment bill
- New measures on immigration reform
- NIC relief for employers of military veterans
- Deepen trade ties in the Gulf, Africa and the Indo-Pacific regions
The NFB will be looking intensely into how these ambitions are to be delivered and speaking to members, ministers and civil servants about how they can help the construction industry.
For example, building material prices are currently increasing and therefore deeper trade ties offer exciting opportunities to reduce those costs. Similarly, a new advance research agency may help the UK improve its manufacturing base of construction products such as cross laminated timber, an increasingly vital material in modern construction and meeting climate targets.
Beresford, continued: “The Government has signalled its intentions and we intend to push them every step of the way. The construction industry is far reaching and a key component of post-Brexit Britain. Unless we are at the heart of the strategy, any ambition for a better Britain will fail.”