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Simms bullish on Tarmac orders

TARMAC chief executive Sir Neville Simms this week said the firm had secured orders or preferred bidder status on projects worth £800 million in recent months.

In an upbeat group trading statement he said: 'Tarmac has delivered a robust financial performance in 1998. The outlook in the UK is for similar activity levels, which will be underpinned by the recent release of delayed infrastructure projects and the accelerating pace of the Private Finance Initiative.'

Sir Neville said Tarmac's US business would see modest growth as it benefited from increased federal government spending on transport infrastructure.

He added that restructuring and merging the civil engineering and international businesses had cost £7 million, in line with expectations.

Volumes of aggregates fell at the materials division last year, although block sales were up by 8 per cent.