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Building a Better Future for the Construction Industry

CECA: Government must act now to prevent Brexit-imposed construction skills crisis   22nd June 2017

Civils contractors said today that the new Government must act urgently to prevent a full-blown construction skills crisis due to Brexit.

A major CITB research study has found that 2 in 5 employment agencies expect staff shortages due to Brexit; half of London construction firms are heavily reliant on migrant workers; and half of firms with migrant labour are expecting to be impacted by potential migrant caps.

The study also demonstrated that over a third of employers who employ staff from outside the UK say they do so not because they are seeking cheaper labour, but because there are not enough skilled applicants from Britain. It also found that a majority of non-UK construction workers are skilled, with over two-thirds holding a construction-related qualification.

Commenting, Director of External Affairs for the Civil Engineering Contractors Association (CECA) Marie-Claude Hemming said: “CECA calls on the new Government to take steps to ensure the construction industry is able to recruit suitably-skilled workers to build what is a substantial pipeline of work in the coming years.

“A key step towards building industry confidence would be to immediately guarantee the rights of EU construction workers living in the UK, to ensure that those who are helping to build the future health of the UK economy can continue to do so post-Brexit.

“The construction sector requires at least 35,740 new workers per year. Currently the industry is reliant on migrant labour alongside UK workers to meet demand, particularly in London.

“If the Government is to head off a construction skills crisis after Brexit, it must act to dispel uncertainties over the UK’s post-Brexit immigration policy, clarify the status of EU nationals working in the industry, and redouble its efforts to attract new entrants to the sector.”
  

 

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