17th March 2010 – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
A green building strategy with a focus on new work and new skills is the only way the UK construction industry will be able to compete and survive in a changing world with its emphasis on low carbon, says the Federation of Master Builders (FMB) in response to today’s Government announcement on how best the construction sector can deliver future carbon reductions.
Brian Berry, Director of External Affairs at the FMB said:
“The growth of the green economy affords great opportunities for the building industry but it is imperative that government policy is properly joined up so that construction companies can deliver. The impact of the recession on small building firms has been to focus their attention on surviving rather than thinking about the green economy. The retrofitting of the UK’s 26 million homes to make them more energy efficient is a huge market opportunity but unless there is active demand from homeowners builders won’t be able to find the extra work.”
“Any new green strategy for construction must be linked to creating demand in the market which in the case of retrofitting existing homes requires a financial kick- start. Cutting the rate of VAT to five per cent for energy improvements to homes would do the trick as we know from independent research that this has the potential to create over 24,000 extra new jobs in the construction sector alone. We just need the Government to do some joined-up thinking!”