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Brown's 100,000 jobs pledge slammed by construction body

Gordon Brown has announced 100,000 UK jobs will be created to ease the economic downturn, but the construction industry is demanding more action and less political point scoring.
This week the prime minister spoke of his plans to bring forward £10bn of spending on public works, environmental projects and digital technology that would create 100,000 jobs.

'I want to show how we will be able, through public investments and public works, to create probably 100,000 additional jobs over the next period of time in our capital investment programme - schools, hospitals, environmental work and infrastructure, transport,' Brown said in an interview with The Observer newspaper.

30,000 jobs are to be created in school repairs, to help private construction firms weather the economic downturn.

Brown is also looking at 10 projects involving alternative energy sources and said the investment will be made over the next 12 months.

Brown's announcement this week has prompted the Construction Products Association to slam the government for its lack of clarity and action,

'Over the last few months, announcements have been coming thick and fast from the government heralding major construction spending on schools, hospitals, infrastructure projects, and social housing', said the Construction Products Association’s (CPA) chief executive, Michael Ankers.

The CPA represents the UK’s manufacturers and suppliers of construction products.

Ankers added 'The problem is we have yet to see any of these aspirations turned into reality on the ground and this at a time when long-standing public sector construction programmes are well behind schedule. What we need is less political rhetoric and more direct action to get these programmes moving in order to create employment opportunities in an industry that is shedding jobs at an unprecedented rate.'
7 January 2009

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