Post pandemic recovery at threat

May 4, 2021

Scottish construction hit by unprecedented perfect storm of soaring costs, material shortages and lack of labour


An exclusive article by Scottish Construction Now has found that Scotland’s construction-led economic recovery is threatened by a combination of sharply rising prices, disrupted supply chains and a chronic shortage of labour, as the consequences of a no-deal Brexit coupled with the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic are felt.

The article explains that the Scottish construction sector is now dealing with a perfect storm of exponentially rising costs and a severely disrupted supply chain. Timber prices have shot up by as much as 50-100%, with paint by up to 20% and many other materials by 25%, when they are available. 

There are shortages and lengthening lead times for virtually all construction materials from concrete and facing bricks to screws and hinges. Roof tiles, sanitary ware, insulation and radiators and silicon are all in short supply as the economy recovers in the USA and China.

SNIPEF's CEO reports: “Extended delivery times, product shortages and higher prices are detrimentally affecting our members. Items in short supply include sanitary products, radiators, shower trays, resin and pipes as well as screws and fittings – all crucial to the work our members carry out.

“Some have reported price increases in excess of 10% and this together with additional charges, new tariffs and reverse VAT is negatively impacting their cash flow as they try to come out the other side of the pandemic. Product shortages and delays mean that alternative products are being sourced to avoid project delays and this often comes with added cost.

“With demand expecting to remain high throughout 2021, we are recommending to our members to place as many forward orders as soon as they can and to advise customers as early as possible that prices are likely to continue to increase.”

To read the full article by Scottish Construction Now, click here.

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