European construction down again

19 May 2010

New figures from Eurostat show that construction output across the EU was down -2,4% in March compared to a year ago. In the 16 country Euro zone the fall was even more pronounced with a -5,2% decline.

Of the 27 European nations, only the UK and Germany saw growth in March when compared to last year. The UK recorded a +9,2% growth in output while Germany saw a more moderate +2,6% growth.

Hardest hit was Romania with a -23,1% decline followed by Bulgaria with a -20,9% fall. Other double-digit declines were recorded in Slovenia (-19,7%), the Czech Republic (-19,1%), Slovakia (-14,8%), the Netherlands (-16,6%) and Poland (-11,3%).

Portugal, France, Hungary and Sweden saw declines of -7,8%, -6,9%, -5,7% and -2% respectively.

Compared to last March, building construction decreased by -1,3% across the EU and by -2,5% in the Euro zone. Civil engineering fell -4,2% across the 27 member States and by 13,8% in the Euro zone.

On a month-on-month basis the picture was slightly brighter with a +6,8% growth across the EU between February and March this year. Germany led the way with growth of +26,7%, followed by Hungary with a +5,5% growth. The only country to record a month-on-month decline was Sweden, which saw output fall by -0,4%.

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