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BMF calls on Government to extend trade Credit Insurance
THE BMF IS calling on the Government to extend the Trade Credit Insurance re-insurance scheme introduced to support trading following the initial Covid- 19 lockdown, which is scheduled to finish at the end of December this year.
Over 50% of BMF members use some form of Trade Credit Insurance to transact with both customers and suppliers. The Government re-insurance scheme – which provided a £10 billion guarantee – has
helped merchants to access the appropriate level of Trade Credit Insurance to operate their businesses and trade with confidence since it was introduced in May, backdated to 1 April 2020.
BMF CEO, John Newcomb, who chairs the Construction Leadership Council’s insurance working group, has written to the Department of Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) formally requesting a six-month extension to the scheme, to the 30 June 2021.
BMF welcomes Green Homes Grant
THE BMF hopes the
Government’s new Green Homes Grant will create more jobs in the building materials sector. John Newcomb, BMF CEO, said: “We hope the Green Homes Grant will give renewed impetus to help people and companies move towards a low- or zero- carbon future in their homes and workplaces.
“With 80 per cent of building materials manufactured by our members in the UK, and much of the products sold through builders merchants at the heart of their local communities, this is an important sector, which will be key to the recovery of our national economy.”
Total membership of the BMF stands at 751 members, who together have combined sales of £38 billion and employ over 180,000 people in the building materials industry. Mr Newcomb added:
“Investment and innovation are
happening every day across our members’ businesses.
“The sector makes a significant contribution to the economy and it’s important for us to reinforce the message of its value and importance.”
The Green Homes Grant is expected to support 100,000 jobs in green construction and is part of a wider plan to upgrade the nation’s buildings as the UK aims to reach zero net emissions by 2050.
The BMF is working in
partnership with TrustMark, the Government endorsed quality scheme, to ensure quality in the programme’s supply chain. £2 billion has been earmarked for home energy-efficiency upgrades, with a further £1 billion dedicated to improving the energy efficiency of public buildings.
The grant will fund up to two thirds of the cost of home improvements up to £5,000
November 2020 www.buildersmerchantsjournal.ne
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and will cover projects such as insulation of walls, floors and roofs to replacing windows with double or triple glazing.
Low-carbon power options are also covered by the grant – which could save householders up to £600 a year on energy bills.
John Newcomb said: “Trade Credit Insurance is a vitally important part of the construction industry, which ensures the smooth flow of goods and materials throughout the supply chain.
“We were extremely pleased that the Government supported it in May. However, we are now experiencing a series of local lockdowns leading to continued uncertainty for the whole construction industry. “In a survey of companies
across the construction industry – many of whom are involved in building materials manufacture and supply – over 54% of respondents believed that without Government intervention insurers are unlikely to maintain an appropriate level of cover for their business when the current re- insurance scheme ends. “An extension to the current scheme beyond the 31 December deadline will support the industry with business confidence and help it through the continued uncertainty of trading throughout the pandemic.”
The BMF expects to hear the Government’s decision on extending the Trade Credit Insurance re-insurance scheme by mid-November.
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