Construction growth to slow

By Chris Sleight27 February 2008

New forecasts from Global Insight say that world construction output will grow by +3.8% this year and +3.6% next year. At the height of the boom in 2005, the market rose +5.9%, but shrinking output in the US and the cooling of other markets has led to lower growth levels in recent years.

Global Insight sees the strongest growth next year in developing Asia, where output is expected to grow +12.7% to US$ 1.13 trillion. Eastern Europe will not be far behind at +9.2% growth, but the market is only about 10% the size of Asia's at US$ 144 billion per year.

Other developing construction markets are also expected to grow well next year. The Middle East and Africa is expected to rise +7.3% to US$ 175 billion. Latin America meanwhile is forecast for a +7.6% rise in construction output to US$ 234 billion.

Growth in Western Europe is expected to be much lower at +3.4%, but the market is one of the largest in the world at US$ 1.34 trillion. The other major developed market, North America, is forecast for a third consecutive year of falling output in 2008, with the market shrinking –5.6% to US$ 913 billion.

Overall, Global Insight says world construction output next year will be US$ 4.73 billion.

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