The next Government must build Scotland’s construction industry and unlock new jobs by prioritising policies that back local builders, according to the Federation of Master Builders (FMB) Scotland following the launch of its Programme for Government today.
A recent survey asked Scottish builders to rank the key policies that would make the biggest difference to them. They said:
1. Invest in more vocational skills training to ensure that building companies have access to skilled labour
2. Establish a VAT reimbursement fund for home repair, maintenance and energy efficiency improvements
3. Simplify the tendering process to make public sector construction contracts more accessible for SMEs
4. Set out a clear programme of public sector maintenance and construction projects for the next 5 years
5. Reform the planning system so that more new homes are built by SME house builders
Gordon Nelson, Director of FMB Scotland, said: “The next Government must bring forward policies that back local builders to drive our economy, create the jobs we need, and respond to pressing challenges like climate change. Builders will be at the forefront of greening our homes and reaching net zero by 2045, as well as building new homes for the nation and maintaining Scotland’s infrastructure. However, they need greater support.”
Nelson concluded: “Construction has grappled with a skills shortage for many years, so it is no surprise that builders ranked greater investment in vocational education as their biggest priority for the next Government. With greater resources, we can encourage more young people into construction. With the FMB celebrating its 80th anniversary this year, Master Builders are testament to the rewarding careers that the building industry holds.”
Notes to editors
The Federation of Master Builders (FMB) is the largest trade association in the UK construction industry representing thousands of firms in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Established in 1941 to protect the interests of small and medium-sized (SME) construction firms, the FMB is independent and non-profit making, lobbying for members’ interests at both the national and local level.
The FMB is a source of knowledge, professional advice and support for its members, providing a range of modern and relevant business building services to help them succeed. The FMB is committed to raising quality in the construction industry and offers a free Find a Builder service to consumers.