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Increased growth figures are a sign of real potential, says McBains

by Jennie Ward

Construction industry growth has continued to increase, albeit more slowly, according to the latest figures published for the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

Clive Docwra, Managing Director of construction consulting and design agency McBains, commented: “Today’s figures are a sign of the real potential of UK construction in 2020. Overall output increased again, albeit more slowly, by 0.5% in the final three months of last year. This was driven by growth in new work, which offset a small reduction in repair and maintenance work.

“Private commercial and public new housing, which increased by 2.5% and 8.4%, were big factors in the rise in new work. Less positive was the fall in private new housing, which dropped 1.1%.

“More than anything, these figures reflect an underlying resilience in the sector – given that they cover a tumultuous political period at the end of 2019.

“Still, we’re not entirely out of the woods. The government has offered little in the way of detail on what the UK’s future relationship with the EU will look like, and stoked anxiety by ruling out any extension to the negotiations beyond December 2020.

“Until the sector can see what the future entails with our nearest trading partner, and key source of skilled labour, confidence and funding towards new projects is likely to be stymied.”


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