The exact rate of travel time allowances, or ‘country money’, paid in the construction sector is an issue to be dealt with in the normal course of industrial relations, either at a company level between employers and unions, or through the usual industrial relations mechanisms available. Indeed, in 2017, the Labour Court chose not to recommend the inclusion of a travel time allowance in the Sectoral Employment Order relating to the construction sector.
A healthy, sustainable, competitive and well-functioning construction industry that offers good quality long-term employment and construction output is essential to the achievement of the goals of the National Development Plan. In order to help facilitate the development of such an industry, the establishment of a construction sector group was announced as part of the National Development Plan.
The group will ensure regular and open dialogue between Government and the construction sector. The group is now in the process of being established with all details yet to be fully finalised, including its remit, membership and date of the first meeting. I expect the Group will facilitate an exchange of views and an engagement between the various parties on how the industry can grow in a sustainable manner and play a crucial role in achieving the priorities as set out in the National Development Plan.