Housing Secretary Michael Gove has warned investors that the cladding companies they invest in will face “severe consequences” if the firms don’t come forward to discuss a settlement deal with the government to fix buildings cladded with unsafe materials.
In a letter to Blackrock, Vanguard, Fidelity Management and Research and other investors, Gove urged them to convince cladding manufacturers Kingspan, Arconic and Saint-Gobain to act decisively to end the building safety crisis.
Following an inquiry, the three companies were found to be responsible for producing the majority of the cladding that contributed to the fire at Grenfell Tower in 2017.
The Housing Secretary has already implemented several measures to ensure developers pay their fair share in remediation works of buildings affected by unsafe cladding, in an effort to protect innocent leaseholders and ensure they’re not the ones footing the bill.
But now Gove is trying to make the cladding companies themselves pay too.
“Today we ask responsible investors to use their influence to encourage these companies to come forward immediately with a comprehensive financial package for remediation work”, Gove wrote.
“To those cladding companies who fail to do the right thing: you will face severe consequences and I will use all commercial and legal tools available to me to ensure you take responsibility”, Gove added.
According to the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, Kingspan has agreed to meet officials, but hasn’t yet committed to any spending.