Price rises, allocations and delays have become common terms used to describe supply chain challenges in the construction sector and now there are reports that the government may delay the introduction of UKCA certification to avoid material shortages because of lack of capacity in UK to test and certify construction products.
Since Brexit came into effect however, UKCA (UK Conformity Assessed) marking has been introduced to replace the CE certification for Great Britain on construction products from 1 January 2022. The UKCA marking alone cannot be used for goods placed on the Northern Ireland market, which require the CE marking or UKNI marking. For British construction product manufacturers, these changes have required careful planning.
The supply chain, including the Construction Products Association, has expressed concern about the ability of product manufacturers to have thousands of construction products retested in time for the new marking system to start operating on 1 January 2022.
A recent meeting involving construction product testing and certification organisations and the Ministry of Housing and Local Government is said to have discussed a delay to the 2022 deadline. Reports in Building claim the rethink was being driven by lack of testing laboratory capacity in the UK to test and provide accreditation for thousands of construction products. The report quotes and unnamed source saying the new UKCA system could be delayed until 2023 and introduced at the same time as the new Building Safety regulations.