Construction output down in rolling quarter
Construction output in the UK has fallen considerably over the last rolling quarter, new data has revealed.
Running from November to the end of January, data collated by the Office for National Statistics highlighted a 10.2 per cent downturn in the number of completed projects across the country, while the amount of new projects getting underway also diminished by 13 per cent in comparison to the same period 12 months ago.
Steve McGuckin, UK managing director of global programme management consultancy Turner & Townsend, commented: "Sadly the momentum of the last quarter of 2012 has not been maintained, and the construction sector risks being recast as the fall guy of the British economy.
"Across all construction sectors, output is down once again, with the fall in infrastructure work particularly worrying."
Construction has been highlighted as one of the most important areas for the promotion of a sustained economic recovery in the coming years, with the sector contributing seven per cent towards the UK's gross domestic product each year.
It is therefore imperative that action is swiftly taken to address this worrying downturn in building activity, especially in the light of the ongoing housing crisis and the need to demonstrate a strong and resilient building industry in the light of the recent AAA downgrade by international credit agency Moody's.
The news follows a recent publication of data by the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA), which revealed that the delivery of enough new homes to meet demand in the coming years will be highly reliant on solid planning and greater access to funds for developers across the country.
"We continue to monitor this situation in light of an increased pipeline of new properties expected in the next 18 months," stated Jonathan Walters, deputy director of strategy and performance at the HCA.
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