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Support for housebuilding should be chancellor’s priority says CBI

11 Mar 13 Business lobby group the CBI is pressing the chancellor to use his forthcoming budget to help smaller housebuilders get finance.

The CBI says that housing should form the main plank of this month's budget statement, with support for both buyers and builders and those wanting to refurbish their homes.

The CBI has set out detailed proposals that would shift £2.2bn from current spending to high-growth areas, including an extra £1.25bn of capital investment through the Affordable Homes Programme.

CBI director-general John Cridland said: “The government must stick to its fiscal plan but now is the time to kick-start confidence. Our measures will provide another boost for the housing market and will benefit first-time buyers, those trapped in negative equity and those looking to refurbish their homes.

“To boost the construction sector, we are calling for 50,000 new affordable homes to be built, incentives for refurbishing empty homes and the housing guarantee scheme to be extended to all types of housing.

“We must supercharge the NewBuy scheme to allow second-time buyers struggling to get on the next rung of the property ladder.

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“With its relatively short lead-in times, house building offers the most bang-for-buck in growth terms - unleashing pent-up demand, while creating jobs and growth.”

The CBI reckons that cutting tax on domestic renovation and repair work “has the potential to create 80,000 jobs at a cost of no more than £500m”.

The CBI is also calling on the government to bring forward its road spending and repair programme. It wants fast-track spending for the A63 in Yorkshire and the A38 junction in Derby.

Budget day is Wednesday 20 March 2013.

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