It cannot be denied that the long running debate on Brexit and the resulting debilitating effect on Government has dented the construction sector with the infection of uncertainty.
Whether for or against, we now have a definitive decision and a Government with a clear mandate.
Now the theatrics of the election are over the Government must now take a serious look at not just the means to achieve a beneficial Brexit but also at what is needed internally in the three most important areas of NHS, Schools and Housing.
Construction represents 7% of the UK’s GDP and plays a vital role in all of these basic services, the need for a confident construction sector should be considered paramount and this is what we hope for in 2020.
We noted some comments from leading players within the sector below:
“It is critical that the new Government focuses as quickly as possible on the key decisions that will drive greater social cohesion and economic strength for the UK. Most notably: a commitment to national and regional infrastructure investment; support for the innovation and digitisation that will modernise our sector and many others; and a rigorous commitment to reversing our national skills shortage.
“These are the factors that will kick-start growth and enable the UK to compete successfully in global markets. It is imperative that the public and private sector work together to deliver them.”
Leo Quinn, Balfour Beatty Group Chief Executive
“This is a definitive result, and one that will hopefully finally provide the stability the sector so desperately needs in order to deliver growth. For Boris Johnson and his new Government, the focus in the initial few weeks will rightly be on finding a clear path through Brexit. For our industry, the most important thing is ensuring that we maintain access to the right mix of skills and talent once we leave the European Union. That means making sure that our future migration system is fit for purpose – and in turn that means it must take account of the specific challenges faced by construction. The Construction Leadership Council and I will be working with the Government and our trade bodies to make sure that is the case.
“As we look beyond Brexit, I also hope that we will see the promises made on the campaign trail around infrastructure funding and delivery quickly come to fruition. It is particularly important that we receive clarity on the future of crucial large projects like HS2, the expansion of Heathrow and Northern Powerhouse Rail. If the Government can assuage the doubts of the sector and make firm commitments to deliver it will unlock a huge amount of investment and growth; securing our future and ensuring that our economy is able to continue to grow.”
Mark Reynolds, Chief Executive Officer, Mace Group