20/10/2010

NI Builders Facing Deepening Crisis

There has been a continuing downturn in the NI construction sector as builders in Northern Ireland struggle to manage the recession.

Even before this week's Comprehensive Spending Review and expected cutbacks in Executive spending on new building projects, the latest figures have showed a 5.7% decrease in output during the past quarter.

The NI Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA) attributed most of the drop to a decline in new work, which fell by 5% between April and June over the previous quarter.

The Central Survey Unit published the latest edition of the Northern Ireland Construction, which is the primary measure of the value of construction output in Northern Ireland (the Index of Construction).

It is obtained from the Northern Ireland Quarterly Construction Enquiry (QCE), a statutory survey of construction firms operating in Northern Ireland.
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Each quarter a sample of construction firms is asked to provide details of the value of construction activity they have undertaken within NI in a specified period.

This Bulletin provides a measure of the value of construction output in Northern Ireland for the second quarter of 2010.

Among the key findings is news that the total volume of construction output in the second quarter of 2010 fell by 5.7% compared with the first quarter of 2010 while the total volume of construction output in the second quarter of 2010 was 14.5% lower compared to the same quarter in 2009.

Most of the decrease in the total volume of construction output in the second quarter of 2010 was accounted for by a decline in what's known as 'New Work', which fell by 5.0% over the quarter.

Over the same period, the total volume of repair and maintenance work fell by 0.5%.

The previously published decrease in the total volume of construction output from the fourth quarter of 2009 to the first quarter of 2010 of 3.2% has now been revised to a decrease of 6.2%.

(BMcC/GK)

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