BWF calls for some serious Budget action this year
Published by Liz Male for British Woodworking Federation in Housing and also in Central Government
The British Woodworking Federation (BWF) has added its voice to the call for strong measures to boost housing and the retrofit markets in construction in this year's Budget.
Iain McIlwee, BWF chief executive, said:
"The joinery and woodworking sector is a £5 billion gem which has been at the heart of the British manufacturing sector since manufacturing began. But it has never been this tough for this long and that is why this year’s Budget is more important than ever. It has to be about growth and the environment to support growth. We have had far too much jam tomorrow.
"In recent budgets we have had the promise of money to support construction, but it is simply not filtering through the bureaucracy. The focus must be on positive decisive action – not just about making monies available, but making stuff happen.
"We are urging the Government to do all it can to shift spending to capital investment on social housing and look at how stamp duty can be used further to support first time buyers and hence drive the private market towards meeting housing targets.
"It’s also time to reduce VAT on all domestic refurbishment work. I know everyone has been calling for this for a long time, but it’s now urgent. This measure alone would not only provide a much needed shot in the arm for the refurbishment and retrofit sector, but would drag work out of the grey economy, thus improving tax returns to the Treasury and the professionalism within the building sector as a whole."
A copy of the BWF's letter to the Chancellor can be read at http://www.bwf.org.uk/assets/budget-letter-bw-scan.pdf