The 2020 Budget will be closely watched by construction. Not only is Chancellor Sajid Javid pledging to splash the cash by kicking off his £100bn investment programme, but it is widely expected that the Budget will be accompanied by both the government’s construction strategy and the national infrastructure strategy. Yet is it really possible to combine an industry transformation with a promise to “level-up opportunity in left-behind parts of the country?”
Having been spared the threat of nationalisation, Water Companies now face the AMP7 triple challenge of heightened customer expectation, accelerating climate change and diminished returns on capital. Ofwat’s price review final determinations (FD) have set out a five-year price and service package, but what does this mean both for customers and the industry?
One aspect of the 2019 general election that stood out was the very high profile of environmental issues on the campaign trail. Both Labour and Lib Dems signed up to incredibly ambitious decarbonisation targets, and the Green Party eventually increased its vote by 65%. Ultimately, the Conservative Party who published the least ambitious climate change commitments has won the largest electoral mandate in 32 years. Boris Johnson has the power to deliver, and by a stroke, the UK’s climate change discourse can move from consideration of hypothetical programmes to a deliverable 30-year route map to net-zero carbon.
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