According to the Federation of Master Builders (FMB), Andrew Stephenson MP, the new construction minister, should make it his mission to raise quality and standards in the construction industry through mandatory licensing
Richard Harrington took up the role as construction minister in June 2017, after the previous construction minister, Jesse Norman, was moved to the transport department following the general election. Norman held the role for just under a year.
Harrington, who has tweeted a copy of his resignation letter, said: “The clear message I have been receiving from the business community that failure to secure a deal and to rule out a hard Brexit is resulting in cancelled investment decisions, business being placed abroad, and a sense of ridicule for British business, across the world.”
Today I‘ve written an open letter to my constituents, explaining why I took the difficult decision to resign as a Govt minister. It’s been an honour to represent biz community, alongside brilliant colleagues inc @GregClarkMP @claireperrymp @KellyTolhurst https://t.co/kGt1UOHsdC
— Richard Harrington (@Richard4Watford) March 26, 2019
Brian Berry, chief executive of the FMB, said: “I warmly welcome Andrew Stephenson into his new role and I look forward to working with him to raise standards, quality and professionalism in the construction industry. The time is right to look at a meaningful way in which we can purge the sector of rogue firms and unprofessional outfits once and for all.
“With the publication of the Independent Review of Building Regulations and Fire Safety, and the quality of some new build homes being called into question, we need to act now to improve standards and increase productivity. A mandatory licensing scheme for the whole UK construction sector has widespread support among the industry and homeowners, alike. The Government must legislate to stop the scourge of unprofessional behaviour blighting the entire industry.”
Berry concluded: “With the recent appointment of a member of the FMB onto the Construction Leadership Council, we also look forward to working with the Minister on implementing the Sector Deal in a way that will help to unleash the potential of small to medium-sized construction firms.
“After all, they are the bedrock of the industry, training two-thirds of all construction apprentices and forming the supply chain of larger contractors. We must tirelessly work to remove barriers to SME construction companies if we are to deliver on the Government’s infrastructure targets.”