Construction Leadership Council submits an industry wide response to @RishiSunak ahead of #Budget2021
Within the world of construction, apprenticeship numbers have plummeted by 40%, the five-year average is 22,500 but this year saw just 16,000 apprenticeship starts for construction trades in Britain. As a result, industry leaders are calling for the chancellor to give apprenticeships a boost, reigniting interest among young people in construction-based careers.
Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) policy director Steve Radley, said:
“Apprenticeship starts have been down. We’re saying they’re probably down by about 40 per cent on normal levels in England and slightly less in Scotland and Wales. We didn’t see the bounce back we thought we’d see in January, which is one of the things we’re looking at.”
The Construction Leadership Council (CLC) has submitted an industry wide response ahead the Chancellor’s Budget Statement on 3 March 2021.
The submission outlined how the construction sector could most effectively support the UK’s recovery in line with the Government’s key policy priorities to achieve Net Zero, Building Safety, Levelling Up, stimulating economic activity and protecting jobs.
CLC focussed on a small number of key interventions to drive immediate economic growth and market confidence. These included:
- Committing to a National Retrofit Strategy;
- Offering Incentives for the commercial property sector;
- Expanding the Building Safety Fund;
- Making the Infrastructure Bank an effective vehicle for regeneration;
- Securing Local authority funding;
- Extending the Stamp Duty Holiday and Duty review;
- Withdrawing Reverse Charge VAT; and
- Extending employer apprenticeship incentives and Apprenticeship Levy flexibility
CLC says the Government should further extend the employer apprenticeship incentive scheme for hiring an apprentice beyond 31st of March. Given the prolonged nature of the pandemic, this support will continue to be critical for apprenticeship starts in the industry.
The Construction Industry would also welcome a commitment from Government to the amount of funding planned to be allocated through the ‘matched’ and ‘pledged’ Apprenticeship Levy transfer mechanisms in support of construction apprenticeships.