Catriona Lingwood discusses the second quarters figures for Construction
Architecture was one of the many sectors in the construction industry hit hard when the country went into recession back in 2008. Building budgets were severely slashed and a number of companies were forced to cut jobs and eventually close due to the lack of work and funding available.
The impact of the recession can still be felt all around the country, with a number of forecast reports showing very little to look forward to in the near future. Just this week, figures released show that in the second quarter of this year, output in the building sector fell 5.2 per cent with the industry beginning to feel the effects of the economic slowdown and the sharp drop in public spending on social housing and infrastructure projects.
However, although reports show little in terms of growth, the majority state that to begin moving forward, the construction industry needs to be nurtured as this sector is the one that will have the most impact on the wider economy.
At the beginning of the month, twenty three of the country’s big name contractors started a campaign, ‘Creating Britian’s Future’, calling on the Government to speed up decision making and to find new ways of financing construction products to stimulate wider growth.The campaign began with a letter to the Government, highlighting the industry’s ability to create growth and build venues like those for the Olympics which were built on time, under budget, whilst also providing a number of people with valuable skills.
Figures also show the impact construction has on the economy; with it said that for every £1 spent in construction, £2.84 is generated in the local economy. Overall, the construction industry is worth over £120 billion to the UK economy each year with 1 in 12 people in the UK, a total of 11 per cent of the UK workforce, employed in construction.
Paul Moore, managing director of Darlington-based construction and development specialist Southdale, believes by placing greater focus on meeting housing demand there could be a significant reduction in unemployment, giving the economy the kick start it needs.
Support for the housing sector, despite the huge impact it has on the economy, is not at the right level and he believes this is partly because we do not have a dedicated housing minister. Areas such as planning law and the availability of land need to be addressed to allow housing to be built at the rate it should be.
While this will not wipe out unemployment by any stretch of the imagination, it will help to considerably reduce the figures announced recently.
Submitted on 27.07.12
Author: Catriona Lingwood, Chief Executive Constructing Excellence in the North East
< Back to News
Click here to access the news archive.