Following the political developments of last week MPs are back at work and the machinery of Government winds back into action.
Gavin Barwell the Housing & Planning Minister lost his seat at the General Election but has now been appointed as Theresa May’s Chief of Staff. At the time of writing the post of housing and planning minister has yet to be filled but Greg Clarke remains business secretary and he was the driving force behind the National Planning Policy Framework.
It is expected that the housing white paper will proceed as will the update to the National Framework. However these legislative processes will be undertaken against a febrile political atmosphere, a weak government and a resurgent Europe and France, where Mr Macron is about to secure a thumping majority. Brexit negotiations start next week and this will be a major test for the government. In political terms if the negations go badly it could trigger a further election and more political instability.
The biggest impact on development and building could be investor confidence and the willingness of companies, landowners and others to invest in land and property. Development is a long term process and returns can take several years. However the fundamental needs for housing and business remain. Employment remains at record levels and the government has in place the House Building Fund to ensure funding for house building. Demand in the East & West Midlands for business and industrial buildings remains strong and we are working on several commercial as well as residential projects.
If we remain in the single market the economy will be boosted. If we pull out and develop new markets to compensate, economic growth should continue. The reduction in EU migration following the fall in the value of the pound and the growth in the EU economy will reduce pressure to restrict free movement. This will give the government greater flexibility in its EU negotiations and help to limit any adverse impacts on the UK economy.
It is another day in the office. Building and renewal is a continuous process and the future is bright as long as we remember that it is.
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