The statement from John Newcomb, CEO of the Builders Merchants Federation and Peter Caplehorn, CEO of the Construction Products Association, co-chairs of the Construction Leadership Council’s Product Availability working group, says a slight slowing of the market over the summer holiday months has resulted in product availability broadly improving. Some issues remain, however, with extended lead times continuing for gas boilers and various items containing semi-conductors and other electronics.
It adds that the root cause of the problem affecting smart meters, electrics, and gas boilers is set to continue into 2023 as sub-component manufacturers struggle to secure supplies of semi-conductors and electronic components in a highly competitive market. Electrical component shortages are similarly affecting manufacturers in the wider electrical sector, likely to lead to reduced availability and increased prices.
The CLC statement also sends a warning shot about how the energy price crisis could impact product supply chains across Europe. Although the UK government’s recent announcement of a six-month energy price cap for business users will help manufacturers here to some degree, the risks around supply and cost of energy threaten manufacturing throughout the EU. While EU policy-makers wrestle with their own solutions, the possibility of factory shutdowns on the continent may lead to shortages of products, materials, and components exported to the UK.
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