number of measures outlined in the Chancellor's budget could be seen as
positives from a Construction Industry and wider Built Environment perspective.
"First is the proposal to reform apprenticeships, including Higher and Degree Apprenticeships. Hopefully, this should come with some real
number of employers should be pleased with this. The construction industry
should also benefit from the 3 million apprenticeship target which the government
has set for itself. This should also go some way towards addressing some of the
issues of skills shortages and skill gaps in the construction sector.
however, important that the construction industry plays a significant role in driving the quality of apprenticeships, by setting standards and providing organisational support. Employers, professional bodies and providers need to work
closely to make this happen successfully.
was also the announcement of the new "National Living Wage". I'm sure the construction industry would
have benefited more if the government went the extra mile to increase the
minimum wage for apprentices. But this is seemingly not to be.
expected on the issue of stimulating the housing market. Housing remains a
crisis issue, and the budget seemingly has failed to tackle this head-on. The
construction industry needs to keep a careful watch on the Chancellor's
proposed reforms to tax credits, as this could effectively increase the cost of labour, as certain employment structures become less favoured and less lucrative.
"The rise in employment allowance of £3000, however, should benefit
small construction firms as they could still employ four people without paying national insurance. Finally I would expect that the announcement by the Chancellor that
small and medium size constructors will get a £100m boost through the Housing Growth
Partnership would be seen as positive move, and one which the Federation of
Master Builders should be quick to seize upon."