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Fears over potential ‘gaps’ in timber supply

UK and European timber suppliers’ determination to chop manufacturing in mild of softening demand may result in shortages, a commerce physique has warned.

Though there’s at present a “plentiful provide of timber” within the UK, contractors could possibly be hit by an absence of fabric if demand was to all of the sudden return, based on the Development Management Council’s product-availability working group.

“This might result in gaps within the provide chain if demand [then] rises all of the sudden,” the group warned in its newest product-availability assertion. But it surely added that availability wouldn’t turn out to be a “main concern” if demand held at its present ranges.

Market uncertainty was a key motive for a fall within the quantity of timber imported to the UK, based on a report launched this week by commerce affiliation Timber Growth UK (TDUK). The uncertainty had mixed with excessive ranges of inventory within the UK to push down imports, based on the group.

Timber has additionally been hit by the price of residing disaster, with TDUK’s head of technical and commerce, Nick Boulton, saying the disaster had “begun to chunk our sector”.

“Excessive vitality costs [are] harming shopper confidence and decreasing demand for residence enhancements,” he mentioned.

Boulton predicted that demand for timber would enhance “considerably” in the long run on account of its potential environmental advantages as a constructing materials.

The CLC launch additionally advised that inflation was hitting energy-intensive supplies equivalent to cement and bricks.

Though the nice and cozy autumn this 12 months lowered demand for fuel, costs may rise once more amid a drop in temperatures this winter, the commerce affiliation warned.

Insolvencies within the business have additionally remained excessive, with 19 construction firms falling into administration in October. The speed is, nevertheless, markedly decrease than the 31 companies that went under in February, which was a file excessive.

The CLC report put the excessive variety of administrations right down to a combination of causes, with some corporations that have been propped up by governmental COVID-19 help failing as soon as the funding got here to an finish. It additionally cited contractors’ battle to maintain to fixed-price contracts at a time of excessive inflation and decreased cashflow.

“Collaborative risk-sharing will probably be key to preserving business resilience and capability transferring ahead,” the CLC assertion mentioned.