Skip to main content

Business News | Scotland: Lockdown could cripple builders firms 'in months'

4-5 minutes - Source: BBC



closed building site
Image caption Sites in Scotland have been closed for more than five weeks
Many construction firms in Scotland face the prospect of financial collapse within months unless the lockdown can be eased, an industry body has said.
All but essential construction sites in Scotland have been closed for more than five weeks since the coronavirus restrictions were introduced.
From next week, three of the UK's biggest housebuilders will reopen their sites in England.
The Federation of Master Builders wants the same rules for Scottish firms.
And it has warned that many smaller builders will go bust if they are not allowed to follow suit.
The group is now asking the Scottish government for a timeline - and updated guidance - to allow them to get safely back to work.

'We are adaptable'

FMB Scotland director Gordon Nelson said that financial problems were mounting as each week goes by.
He said: "There's evidence that about two thirds of small and medium-sized construction firms may only have the cash to survive another two to three months if the present circumstances continue.
"We're pleased about the job retention scheme from the UK government for furloughed workers.
"But we're also asking for small grants for more building companies around the country so that they can survive."
"Our members are very keen that we don't unintentionally rush back to work too soon in a way that may lead to a spike in new infections of the coronavirus.
"We're keeping a close eye on, and are in dialogue with, construction firms in England to see what evidence they can demonstrate for safe operating. We want to use that evidence and take it to the Scottish government.
"We are determined to get back to work as quickly as possible so our members can generate work and survive and thrive in the medium to longer term."

'Open the door slightly and get us back to work'

Andrew Haldane's construction firm had to temporarily shut down on 23 March and all its employees are currently furloughed.
He has plenty of orders in his books for when work does resume but says, like all builders, he has serious concerns about the future.
And he believes the Scottish government must "open the door slightly" by agreeing to new working practices that would comply with social distancing instructions.

Staggered breaks

Mr Haldane said: "Only essential works are being done in Scotland, which is understandable given the current situation.
"Down in England they have a different format where contractors are going back to work in the near future.
"I think we just need a collaborative effort from everyone in the business to agree that there is a way we can to go back to work.
"Whether that be our people travelling to work on their own, not using public transport, working in phases with staggered breaks and PPE where that's necessary."

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Analysis | The Cybersecurity 202: How the shutdown could make it harder for the government to retain cybersecurity talent

By Joseph Marks 13-17 minutes THE KEY President Trump delivers an address about border security amid a partial government shutdown on Jan. 8. (Carolyn Kaster/AP) The partial government shutdown that's now in its 18th day is putting key cyber policy priorities on hold and leaving vital operations to a bare bones staff. But the far greater long-term danger may be the blow to government cyber defenders' morale, former officials warn. With the prospect of better pay and greater job security in the private sector, more government cyber operators are likely to decamp to industry, those former officials tell me, and the smartest cybersecurity graduates will look to industry rather than government to hone their skills. That’s especially dangerous, they say, considering the government’s struggle to recruit and retain skilled workers amid a nationwide shortage of cybersecurity talent. About 20 percent of staffers are furloughed at the De

Democrats call for investigation into Trump’s iPhone use after a report that China is listening:Analysis | The Daily 202 I The Washington Post.

washingtonpost.com By James Hohmann _________________________________________________________________________________ President Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping visit the Great Hall of the People in Beijing last November. (Andrew Harnik/AP) With Breanne Deppisch and Joanie Greve THE BIG IDEA: If Democrats win the House in two weeks, it’s a safe bet that one of the oversight hearings they schedule for early next year would focus on President Trump’s use of unsecured cellphones. The matter would not likely be pursued with anywhere near the gusto that congressional Republicans investigated Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server during her time as secretary of state. Leaders of the minority party have higher priorities . But Democratic lawmakers made clear Thursday morning that they will not ignore a New York Times report that Trump has refused to stop using iPhones in the White House, despite repeated warnings from U.S. intelligence offici

RTTNews: Morning Market Briefing.-Weekly Jobless Claims Edge Down To 444,000. May 13th 2010

Morning Market Briefing Thu May 13 09:01 2010   Commentary May 13, 2010 Stocks Poised For Lackluster Open Amid Mixed Market Sentiment - U.S. Commentary Stocks are on pace for a mixed start to Thursday's session, as a mostly upbeat jobs report continued to relieve the markets while some consternation regarding the European debt crisis remained on traders' minds. The major index futures are little changed, with the Dow futures down by 4 points. Full Article Economic News May 13, 2010 Weekly Jobless Claims Edge Down To 444,000 First-time claims for unemployment benefits showed another modest decrease in the week ended May 8th, according to a report released by the Labor Department on Thursday, although the number of claims exceeded estimates due to an upward revision to the previous week's data. Full Article May 13, 2010 Malaysia's Decade High Growth Triggers Policy Tightening Malaysia's economy grew at the fastest pace in a decade in