The British Cement Association (BCA) today called on the Chancellor of the Exchequer to recognizse in his Budget next week, the strategic contribution of the domestic cement industry in meeting the country’s economic and social development goals. Reminding him of the promise he made in his pre-Budget speech last November, that the Government would respond to the rising aspirations of the British people, the BCA, whose members are Castle Cement, Cemex UK, Lafarge Cement UK and Tarmac Buxton Lime and Cement, pointed out that if the Government is to deliver on its promises of more homes, schools, health care facilities and better infrastructure, then the country needs the materials to build them - and that means cement and concrete. Only cement and concrete are fire and flood resistant and have natural warming and cooling properties that will help to reduce energy usage in a period of climate change.
“Cement and concrete are essential to achieving the economic development that will flow from better infrastructure and the social development aspirations of the public who demand new and better homes, schools and health care facilities” said Professor Pal Chana, Acting Chief Executive of the BCA. “Cement is a local product made in Britain and supplies are essential to help the construction and civil engineering industries meet government’s challenging targets. It is vital that a healthy and competitive domestic cement industry is maintained if we are not to risk ‘carbon and jobs leakage’ to non-carbon constrained countries. It is also essential that we do everything we can to avoid ‘carbon miles’ associated with imports”.
The BCA said “A taxation system that encourages imports and carbon leakage would be a disaster for the economy and the planet; we urge the Chancellor and the Government to think very carefully before introducing new burdens on industry; this means, amongst other things, ensuring that the cement industry is recognized as a ‘potentially competitively impacted sector’ under the EU Commission’s proposals for EU ETS Phase III.