Easier access to the best design from across the world is to be available via a new architects’ recognition system, the government has announced.

The new initiative will allow architects with certain international qualifications to join the UK register administered by regulator the Architects Registration Board, ARB.

The National Federation of Builders housing and planning policy head Rico Wojtulewicz described the move as extremely useful.

“We should always be ensuring the best talent can work in the UK and international recognition standards are one way to achieve that.”

Housing minister Chris Pincher said: “This fundamental realignment of the profession will reassert the UK’s reputation as a global leader in architecture, ensuring we continue to attract the best architects from around the world to build back better on the homes and infrastructure in this country.”

The new register will be enshrined in law under the professional qualifications bill and is a response to a wider consultation on amending the architect’s act, 1997.

Investment minister Lord Gerry Grimstone said: “Our new laws will enable world-class architects to continue working in the UK and can make it possible for the ARB to open up opportunities for British architects working with our global partners.”

The Royal Institute of British Architects, RIBA, said it was important the government recognised the global standing of UK architects by committing to recognition of international standards.

“To enable the UK profession to maintain and build its reputation as a global leader, the government must now focus on securing reciprocal agreements, to allow both the exportation and recruitment of talent,” said president Alan Jones.

New moves to drive up competency 

The ARB will also be given wider powers to monitor architects’ continuing professional development under the building safety bill.

ARB chair Alan Kershaw said: “This is an opportunity to recognise formally the considerable amount of development activity that most architects already do. We will develop our approach in collaboration with architects and use our regulatory powers to promote consistency across the profession.”

Mr Pincher said the reforms built on major legislative improvements being made by the government concerning fire and building safety.

Brokers Hank Zarihs Associates said development finance lenders supported moves to drive up standards and give architects the skills to face key challenges from building safety to climate change.

The government’s response to a consultation on amendments to the architects act 1997 includes: strengthening the ARB’s monitoring role and listing disciplinary orders against architects on the register.

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