FMB: looser immigration barriers will boost construction

The UK Government’s proposed loosening of immigration rules will be a positive boost for the construction sector says the Federation of Master Builders.

The Government’s proposed loosening of immigration rules will be a positive boost for the construction sector, which is struggling to recruit enough workers, says the Federation of Master Builders (FMB).

Under new plans, refugees who are resettled into the UK will benefit from full rights and entitlements through immediate indefinite leave to remain. The Government has also announced changes to the Immigration Rules for business people and workers. The headline changes include the closure of the Start-up visa route, replacing the current Innovator route, and increases to salary thresholds under the Skilled Worker, Global Business Mobility, Scale-up and Seasonal Worker routes.

Brian Berry, Chief Executive of the FMB said: “The Government’s proposal to allow more foreign workers into the UK will help address the current skills shortages in the construction industry. The construction sector needs tens of thousands of new entrants every year to meet current demands. The FMB and other industry stakeholders have called on the Migration Advisory Committee to review the Shortage of Occupation List and to include more trades such as bricklayers and carpenters to help boost economic growth.”

“In the recent FMB State of Trade Survey, 48% of small builders reported being in favour of increased immigration provided this was underpinned by better investment in skills training. With core skills in short supply, as evidenced by the fact that around a third of FMB members are struggling to hire carpenters and bricklayers, this is causing 60% of jobs to be delayed, curtailing the ability of the building industry to grow. While immigration will help grow the construction sector, there still needs to be investment in UK-based training to train the next generation of builders."

See the UK Government's full proposals here.


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