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Construction industry set for growth

By the end of 2018, the construction industry will see 23 per cent growth and will have contributed £12 billion to the UK economy, according to the latest Construction Products Association Autumn Forecasts.

Initially, the report suggests a 4.8 per cent rise in output in 2014, and an additional 5.3 per cent seen in 2015. Private housing starts are also expected to see growth, rising 18 per cent this year, and 10 per cent the next.

When it comes to specific sectors, the forecast highlights a 46.1 per cent rise in roads construction and a staggering 118.2 per cent rise in energy infrastructure by 2018.

Economics director of the Construction Products Association Dr Noble Francis said: “Our Forecasts reflect a welcome, recurring theme as growth continues and begins to broaden. Short-term activity is still led by private housing, infrastructure and commercial, and areas of public sector construction are showing the first signs of increasing strength. We believe the expansion will continue through 2018.

Dr Francis said that a rise in consumer spending and business investment would benefit the commercial sector, with output expected to top £26.8 billion in 2018. However, this does still reflect a low in comparison to pre-recession figures – 16.6 per cent lower than in 2008.

As a sub-sector of commercial, offices are seeing heightened demand both within and outside London and the South East. Dr Francis commented: the Association expects new offices construction will expand by 10.0% in 2014 and 8.0% in 2015, followed by 7.0% in 2016.”

The forecast also claims that public sector construction will begin recovering, after much austerity. A growth in funding available for hospitals and schools due to a fall in capital investments will aid growth by an average of 2.6 per cent each year from 2015 to 2018 in public sector construction.