Developers ‘must foot £4bn cladding bill or face exclusion from government schemes’

Making clear that others could soon join the developer, an ally of Mr Gove told The Telegraph: “We don’t claim to have all the answers to this crisis yet but this is an important step. We will be guided by three principles – the polluter must pay, leaseholders must be protected and common sense and proportionality must be restored.

“Developers now have the chance to come forward and do the right thing. If not, we will impose a solution in law.”

The proposals to alleviate the scandal that has trapped leaseholders in unsafe and unsellable homes come more than four years after the Grenfell Tower fire in June 2017, in which 72 people were killed.

According to a draft of Mr Gove’s Commons statement, he will warn developers: “I am putting them on notice. If you mis-sold dangerous products like cladding or insulation, if you cut corners to save cash as you developed or refurbished homes, we are coming for you.”

While the move is likely to trigger a backlash from the industry, officials have pointed out that Britain’s biggest developers have amassed huge profits since the blaze.

Whitehall sources highlighted that the chief executives of the country’s four biggest building companies have received at least £50 million in pay, bonuses, shares and dividends since 2017.

Meanwhile, Barratt, Persimmon, Taylor Wimpey, Berkeley, Bellway, Redrow and Vistry have made £16 billion in profits over three years.

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