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Hard Brexit could shrink construction by 9%, warns key peer

A hard Brexit could shrink the construction industry’s capacity at a time when it needs to grow to meet government objectives, a key peer has warned ministers.

Lord Stunell, who is leading a review into the impact leaving the EU will have on construction, also said the industry would ’need to expand its capacity by about 35 per cent’ in order to deliver major infrastructure projects on planned timescales.

The former Liberal Democrat MP said the construction industry needed to significantly grow to deliver major schemes such as Hinkley Point C, a third runway at Heathrow and High Speed 2.

However, in the event of a hard Brexit – where the UK gives up access to the single market, full access to the customs union, and freedom of movement – Lord Stunell said the industry ’will shrink by 9 per cent’.

He said this was based on the proportion of the UK construction labour force from elsewhere in the EU

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