The lack of drivers in the haulage industry has now impacted the distribution of building materials across the construction sector.

PBC Today reports that in an update on product availability, the Construction Leadership Council (CLC) has said that some suppliers have asked builders merchants to collect their orders as they are unable to find enough drivers to complete deliveries.

A joint statement from John Newcomb, CEO of the Builders Merchants Federation and Peter Caplehorn, CEO of the Construction Products Association, who co-chairs the CLC’s Product Availability working group, stated that materials supplies have been eased due to the holiday period, as well as some domestic customers cancelling or postponing projects due to uncertainty.

“Timber, cement, roofing products, bricks, blocks, insulation, steel and cable management systems remain the products in shortest supply, while global shortages of semi-conductors are a cause for concern in the lighting and appliance sectors,” the statement said.

“Although product and material price inflation has slowed, indications are that it will be 2022 before prices stabilise, with some manufacturers still to implement double-digit price increases to recover current and future cost inflation.”

It added the haulage issues are not limited to the construction sector, and that the Department for Transport is working with the freight sector to find both short- and long-term solutions.

Container shipping still affects imports, the statement continued, with Chinese ports running and reduced capacity, which has caused a global backlog, which is forecast to continue through the peak Christmas season and into 2022.


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