Scottish construction recovery plan unveiled

Scottish Construction Leadership Forum releases recovery plan in consultation with industry.

A draft recovery plan for the construction sector in Scotland has been launched by the Scottish Construction Leadership Forum (CLF). The plan, which has been created collaboratively with industry, sets out the pathway for joint action between industry and the public sector in response to the impact caused by the global pandemic on the on the construction sector.

The construction industry in Scotland has been hit hard by the Covid-19 pandemic. The sector in Scotland which provided £7.8bn GVA to the Scottish economy and employs 143,000 people in over 50,000 enterprises, is estimated to have contracted by 28.6%in June as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic compared to the same month a year ago (June 2019). 

The recovery plan has been created through extensive consultation and collaboration with more than 50 organisations across business, Scottish government, trades unions and other bodies, including the Construction Industry Coronavirus (CICV) Forum, and represents a shared view from across the sector of a plan to get industry back on its feet. 

The plan outlines the immediate and short-term response to Covid-19 and sets out a pathway between this and the longer-term transformation required to build a stronger, fairer and greener economic future for Scotland.

Peter Reekie, chief executive of the Scottish Futures Trust and chair of the editorial group of the Construction Leadership Forum, said: “The construction industry in Scotland has received a major blow from the Covid-19 pandemic. However, the level of collaboration which has gone in to preparing this Recovery Plan is unprecedented and sets a strong foundation for transformative recovery for the industry. I urge all stakeholders with an interest in the construction and related industries in Scotland to feed in your thoughts to make it even stronger.”

Ken Gillespie, chair of the Industry Leadership Group, said: “This plan has only been possible through the depth of collaboration across the sector, and hard work of all involved, and demonstrates the sector’s ability to come together in a time of crisis. This is only the beginning though. The plan will evolve and respond to reflect the feedback and the needs of the sector. We are therefore calling for industry to review and contribute to the plan.”

The plan identifies five areas for concerted and collaborative efforts over the coming months and has established Sub-Groups to develop and progress joint action plans:

  • Pipeline & Commercials;
  • Skills & Workforce;
  • Transformation;
  • Supply Chain Resilience & Capability;
  • Industry Data & Insight.

The plan calls for key actions to respond to immediate needs which include: 

  • A clear pipeline of work brought to market quickly and efficiently on fair commercial terms which reflect the reality of the Covid-19 environment;
  • Support of employment, fairness of work and those who may become unemployed through what will be a difficult period;
  • Transformation of working practices to maintain and enhance worker safety whilst enabling productivity in the Covid-19 working environment.

Scottish housing minister Kevin Stewart said: “The construction sector supports many other areas of our economy so it is important that we maintain the health and vitality of the industry. In order to develop this plan, we have reached new heights of collaboration but we are now keen to hear from the wider industry to ensure that we arrive at a plan that will preserve jobs and help to revive our economy.

Click here to download the Recovery Plan.

Industry is invited to send feedback, comments and questions via the website on by 15 September. CLF will take all feedback on board to help develop the plan further, with regular updates published on the CLF website.

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