Gove blasts cladding and insulation manufacturers

Levelling Up minister Michael Gove has written to cladding and insulation manufacturers, demanding that they contribute to the cost of remediating safe buildings.

The housing secretary issued his warning in a strongly-worded letter to industry trade body, the Construction Products Association (CPA). 

The letter comes as the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities revealed that 35 house builders had now signed the Government pledge to fund cladding and building fire safety upgrades as a matter of urgency. 

Under the terms of the deal, developers will fix all buildings of 11m or more in height where they had involvement in its construction over the past 30 years. The industry will contribute an estimated £2bn to remediation buildings and the government will commit another £3bn through an expansion of the Building Safety Levy.

But the government has criticised the response of cladding and insulation manufacturers, claiming they "are yet to accept their share of responsibility and come forward with a proposal".

Gove has now committed to using all his powers to impose "significant commercial and reputational consequences" for those firms that have failed to step up.

In the letter, Gove said: "Unlike the approach taken by developers, manufacturers have failed to make any such commitment. This is simply not good enough."

He added: "It is unacceptable that there has been no clear acknowledgement that actions taken by cladding and insulation manufacturers have contributed to the problem, and that manufacturers have individually and collectively failed to come forward with a proposal for playing their part in addressing it. As such, I now consider our negotiations to have concluded.

"I have instructed my officials to do whatever it takes to make sure that construction product manufacturers are held to account through the powers that I am establishing in the Building Safety Bill. My new recovery unit will pursue firms that have failed to do the right thing, including through the courts."

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Building Safety Cladding