Record 3m tonnes steel construction pipeline

Aaron Morby 10 months ago
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The Government has highlighted it support for steel construction by unveiling plans to use 3m tonnes of steel in infrastructure projects by 2020.

It hopes the huge pipeline will allow manufacturers and specialist contractors to better plan and bid for Government contracts.

Click for UK steel pipeline.

Present procurement guidance requires central Government procurers to consider “the social and economic impact of the steel they source” on projects worth over £10m rather than go for the cheapest option.

As well as providing greater visibility on upcoming projects needing steel, procurement guidance has also been extended to include projects below the current threshold of £10m and those from local and health authorities.

Contractors working on all public jobs will also have to advertise their steel requirements to give UK suppliers a chance to compete.

The move is part of a package of measures to protect the domestic steel industry as it faces financial meltdown in the face of cheap imports.

Sarah McCann-Bartlett, Director of the British Constructional Steelwork Association, said: “The release of the forward pipeline of steel projects for England will provide steelwork contractors and the steel supply chain with more clarity on future demand for fabricated steelwork.

“This adds to the information already available for Scotland and Wales and will help with key investment decisions.

From roads to rail, defence to nuclear, the new data shows that central government infrastructure projects will need enough steel to build the equivalent of 173 Wembley stadiums – or 3 million tonnes worth of steel across 18 separate projects.

Government plans to start publishing its indicative future steel requirements on an annual basis, initially looking forward to 2020.

It complements the new National Infrastructure and Construction Pipeline, which set out over £500bn worth of planned private and public investment over this Parliament and beyond.

Minister for the Cabinet Office Ben Gummer said: “We will always strive to get the best value for money for taxpayers and we are going to do so in a way that strengthens our economy and bolsters the long-term prosperity of people across the country.

“I don’t want contracts going abroad if the best value for money bid is a British bid with all the social and economic benefits that brings.

“By updating our procurement approach on these major infrastructure projects we are creating a level playing field for UK steel.”

The procurement guidance changes will not just apply to steel but other materials as well, including ceramics, cement and aluminium.

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