VAT reduction is essential for green growth say builders

Today’s Budget must include a targeted cut in VAT for all domestic repair, maintenance and improvement if the Government is to get its green economy off the ground.

That’s according to builders’ organisation the Federation of Master Builders.

Brian Berry, FMB director of external affairs says: “The case for a targeted cut is compelling. Independent research shows that a targeted cut in VAT for all domestic RM&I works would create a stimulus effect of £1.4bn and create more than 55,000 jobs this year alone. The comparatively small net loss to the treasury to achieve this effectively represents a 460% return on investment. It is a no brainer”

“This cut is also essential if the Government is to stand any chance of meeting is target of improving the environmental performance of the UK’s Housing stock. The Government has said it wants to be the greenest in history and is committed to upgrading 26 million homes over the next 20 years. To do this the work will need to be completed at the rate of 1.3m homes per annum; this is around 25,000 per week or nearly 3,600 per day.”

“The construction sector is well placed to deliver growth, jobs and the green economy but its crucial SME sector has just entered a fourth year of recession and will lose a further 7,500 jobs as a result of January’s VAT increase alone. A targeted VAT cut is the only way that the country can benefit from what construction has to offer.”

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About Fiona Russell-Horne

Group Managing Editor across the BMJ portfolio.

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