Ahead of the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement the GGF has written to the Chancellor’s Office to outline the Federation’s concerns regarding the Government’s threat to cut ECO (Energy Company Obligation) and also to urge the Treasury to offer homeowners better incentives to make their homes more energy efficient.
The letter points out that rolling back ECO (Energy Company Obligation) as a cost cutting exercise and reaction to rising energy prices, will have a significant effect on vulnerable and low-income households and ‘hard–to-treat’ properties, and could have “severe consequences” for jobs and growth in the Glass and Glazing Industry.
Nigel Rees, GGF Group Chief Executive, commented “ECO is the one part of Green Deal that is proving to be relatively successful with almost 200,000 measures already installed. To remove or reduce ECO would be a disastrous move for all concerned.”
In addition, the GGF highlights in the letter that the Government should consider bringing energy efficient windows in line with other energy efficient products and cut the current VAT rate from 20% to the 5% rate of VAT.
Nigel added, “It’s hard to understand why energy efficient windows are not on the approved list of energy efficient products that qualify for the reduced VAT rate of 5%, when you consider the amount of energy lost through inefficient windows and also the Industry’s investment in technological innovations to increase energy efficiency.”
Also in the letter the GGF outlines its concerns over the delays in domestic construction works caused by the Government’s decision to transfer ownership of private sewers and lateral drains to water and sewage companies. It means homeowners have to wait on water companies’ permission before building over drains and sewers on their properties.
Nigel Rees continued, “The lack of cohesion and urgency from water companies is resulting in unnecessary delays that are not only significantly costing construction companies but also impacting on the wider economic growth. Our letter urges the Government to look at ways of cutting this red tape and to stimulate instead of hindering economic growth.”