New research by Mace suggests British built environment firms could reap major rewards by exporting their services.
If UK companies could raise the sector’s share of exports from 0.4% to 1%, it would generate an additional £11.5bn in revenue and create an additional 142,000 jobs domestically, the consultant claims.
According to its ‘construction partner index’, British expertise could unlock a £400bn boost to infrastructure delivery globally, with the top targets for export including Singapore, Denmark, India, the UAE and Norway.
Jason Millett, Mace’s chief executive for Consult, said: “Although it might not always be recognised at home, the UK’s construction expertise is highly valued around the world – from Peru to Singapore, the British are known as straight-forward delivery experts.
“This report highlights the huge growth on offer if we can capitalise on that reputation and help to deliver more of the world’s global mega-projects.
“By working together, the government and industry have the potential to create thousands of highly-paying export jobs – as well as partnering with government and private developers across the world to ensure that vital infrastructure programmes can be delivered on time and on budget.”
Exports of UK construction services have increased by 53% in the past three years and Mace’s report made several recommendations for the UK government and industry to further increase trade.
It highlighted the potential of the ‘delivery partner’ model, an integrated and collaborative approach to programme delivery that helps to keep mega-projects on track and on programme.
The report also recommended the incentivisation of exports through tax credits, prioritisation of construction services in current and proposed trading agreements, and the negotiation of mutual recognition of engineering, design and other construction-related qualifications.