SEC Group gives cautious welcome to Industrial Strategy White Paper

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SEC Group gives cautious welcome to Industrial Strategy White Paper

The Specialist Engineering Contractors’ (SEC) Group has given a cautious welcome to the Government’s Industrial Strategy White Paper.

Insofar as construction is concerned the White Paper highlights the need for whole life value (rather than initial capital costs) to be at the core of construction procurement.  The White Paper adds:

“The sector will aim to develop a procurement standard and work with the Infrastructure and Projects Authority to develop cost and performance benchmarks for assets and contractors and monitor outcomes including increased housing capacity, productivity and pre-manufactured value among other initiatives.​”

SEC Group chairman Trevor Hursthouse said that a procurement standard should be developed from the lessons now being drawn from the projects that have been piloting the government’s new procurement models including integrated project insurance (IPI).  Trevor Hursthouse added:

“A new procurement standard must embrace collaborative working including early supply chain involvement.  The principles, processes and procurement models required to deliver “best value” have been clearly identified through many past industry reports and Government construction strategies. There continues to be widespread failure to adopt what’s known to be best practice.  Mandating the use of a procurement standard on public sector projects is required if we are to see it applied more widely.”

Trevor Hursthouse also warned that any new initiatives affecting construction are likely to come to nothing unless there was significant improvement in the industry’s cashflow position.  Outdated practices and the uncertainties relating to payment security and cash retentions must be addressed at the same time.

Notes for Editors

  1. SEC Group represents the following trade associations: British Constructional Steelwork Association, Building Engineering Services Association, ECA, Lift and Escalator Industry Association, SELECT (Electrical Contractors Association of Scotland) and SNIPEF (Scottish and Northern Ireland Plumbing Employers’ Federation).  SEC Group represents the largest sector (by value) in the UK’s construction industry.
  2. More details about the construction sector deal will be published shortly by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.
  3. For further information please contact Rudi Klein on 07767 412 903 (email: or Maria Balermpa, SEC Group Operations and Public Affairs Manager on 07508 559 231 (email:
2017-11-30T12:27:33+00:00 30 November 2017|Articles, Press Statements|