A new levy on aggregates could cost the construction industry £330m a year, a leading building materials producer has warned.
From 1 April the government will apply a levy of

£1.60 a tonne on aggregates. Justin Read, deputy finance director of Hanson, said his firm would pass the cost on to clients and he expects other producers to do the same.

The 205 million tonnes of primary aggregate sold in the UK in 2001 would have generated £328m in revenue had the levy been in effect.

The levy amounts to a stealth tax, according to Michael Ankers, chief executive of the Construction Products Association.

He said: “It’s a penal measure on the industry, and it’s fundamentally flawed.”

He said the full regulations relating to the tax would only be completed after it comes into effect in April.