CIOB: Political parties can’t afford to ignore the construction industry

In response to Prime Minister Gordon Brown’s announcement for a May 6th General Election, the Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB) has called on all political parties to listen to the construction industry.

Chris Blythe CIOB Chief Executive said, “What is clear is that the next government will be taking some difficult decisions on public expenditure. Certainly all the parties are saying we cannot go on increasing public debt as we have done, the main area of difference seems to be when the cuts start rather than if the cuts start.

“But if we are to go back to a pattern of consistent economic growth, there needs to be a sustained programme of national investment. The physical infrastructure of this country underpins the entire economic and social infrastructure.

“Investment in the built environment can spread the benefits of an economic stimulus to all parts of the UK. For every £1 spent on construction output, £2.84 is generated in total economic activity, and 92p of every £1 spent on construction is retained in the UK. This is a message that has to sink in with politicians.

“It will be interesting to see how the leaders of the three main political parties fair during the live television debates; and whether they see the connection between the built environment and the UK ‘s economy, equally the country’s legal commitment to reduce CO2 emissions.”

The UK’s ‘Building the Future Economy’ Manifesto for the Built Environment highlights the construction industry’s role in developing the low carbon economy, whether this is through the refurbishment of the existing building stock or the development new buildings and infrastructure. To deliver this low carbon economy and provide a value for money’ return on investment in relation to the built environment, the industry in partnership worth government must strive to achieve the below goals:-

·Maintain construction commitments in programmes such as education and infrastructure renewal to achieve long term national economic benefits.

·Promote future job creation and skills development in the workforce by sustaining training and apprenticeships during the economic downturn.

·Secure ‘value for money’ by properly resourced maintenance programmes, quality design and construction and efficient procurement processes.

·Balance speed and fairness in the planning system at al levels, from the massive changes needed to facilitate large-scale power generation through to the local level.

·Achieve carbon reduction targets and job creation by pro-actively upgrading the energy efficiency of the existing building stock, a self financing exercise as long term savings result.

·Support construction by means of a smoothly run financial system backed by policies on taxation which promote enterprise and growth.

·Think in longer time frames to achieve the long term changes we need in transport, energy and sustainability, as opposed to stop/start cycles.

·Appoint a full-time Minister of Construction and give the new Chief Construction Adviser a fully resourced office to achieve a ‘joined up’ approach which will back up major government programmes in housing, education, health, infrastructure and carbon reduction.

·Promote access to construction jobs to all sections of society to achieve a diverse vibrant industry.

·Pursue a policy of zero tolerance of fatalities and injuries.

A full copy of the Manifesto can be found at: – www.cic.org.uk and www.ciob.org.

ENDS

NOTES TO EDITORS

The Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB) represents for the public benefit the most diverse set of professionals in the construction industry.

Our Mission

To contribute to the creation of a modern, progressive, and responsible construction industry; able to meet the economic, environmental and social challenges faced in the 21st century.

Our 7 Guiding Principles

·Creating extraordinary people through professional learning and continuous personal development.
·Promoting the built environment as central to the quality of life for everyone everywhere.
·Achieving a sustainable future, worldwide.
·Advocating exemplary ethical practice and behaviour, integrity and transparency.
·Pursuing excellence in management practice, and technological innovation rooted in evidence based science.
·Being socially responsible and working responsibly.
·Enabling our members to find an emotional resonance with the Institute; their success is our success.

We have over 45,000 members around the world and are considered to be the international voice of the building professional, representing an unequalled body of knowledge concerning the management of the total building process.

Chartered Member status is recognised internationally as the mark of a true, skilled professional in the construction industry and CIOB members have a common commitment to achieving and maintaining the highest possible standards within the built environment.

Further information is available by contacting:

Saul Townsend MCIPR
Press & Communications Manager

The Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB)
t: + 44 (0) 1344 630 766 f: + 44 (0) 1344 630 770

e: stownsend@ciob.org.uk Twitter: CIOBsaul

w: www.ciob.org www.iconreview.org