The International Trade Secretary recently established 11 trade advisory groups (TAGs) to help advise on Brexit trade negotiations. The construction sector was not one of them, which is surprising given the Prime Minister's "new deal" plan to rebuild the UK post COVID-19.
A significant percentage of building goods and materials are imported into Britain and the movement of these goods and material has become even more of an issue since the start of the pandemic.
With the uncertainty of a second lockdown and the transition period expiring on December 31 2020, companies across the construction spectrum should be carefully considering the contractual risks around delays in delivery, increases in tariffs/duties and how best to allocate these risks with their contracting parties.
Imports have risen from £12bn in 2013 to £17.8bn in 2019 – meaning that the building materials industry’s trade deficit has widened from £6bn to more than £10bn