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Building sector officially in recovery

Friday, December 13 12:24:08

The construction sector - battered by more than five years of deep depression - is officially in recovery, after the latest CSO report on construction activity recorded the fifth consecutive quarterly increase in the volume of construction activity.

The latest CSO report showed the volume of construction activity had increased by 15.5pc since the same period last year and there was also a 1.9pc increase between Q2 and Q3 of 2013.

The CSO's latest Production in Building and Construction Index recorded a 16.6pc in civil engineering activity and 6.9pc increase in non-residential building. However there was a drop of 7.4pc in the volume of residential building.

Discussing the statistics, CIF Director General Tom Parlon of the Construction industry Federation said, "This is the fifth consecutive quarter that the CSO have recorded an increase in volume of construction activity. Over the course of the calendar year the level of construction activity in this country has grown by over 15pc."

"This tallies with reports throughout the industry of increased levels of tenders and more on site work taking place. There has been a marked increase in activity and confidence has been consistently improving. The overall numbers point to a growing industry. Taking all this into consideration, along with the increase in construction employment of 9,100 between Q1 2013 and Q3 2013, I think we can now safely say that the construction sector on a national basis is officially in recovery," said Mr Parlon.

"It should be noted that the recovery is being more acutely felt in the urban parts of the country and the pick up has not been felt nationwide. There is still work to be done to encourage construction activity in all parts of the country. It's also clear not all sectors of the industry are following the general trend with residential activity down in the latest report. Hopefully the demand for more housing in certain parts of the country will help boost residential construction activity."

"The overall message is very positive for the industry. We are delighted to see the Irish construction return to growth and we hope this trend will continue over the coming year," Mr. Parlon added.