Construction in Europe rose in March compared to the same month a year earlier, although it was down slightly on the February 2014 figure.

First estimates from Eurostat show that March’s seasonally-adjusted production in the construction sector fell by 0.6% compared to February in the Eurozone, and by 0.5% the EU28.

Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union, said that in February 2014, production in construction had risen by 0.4% in the Eurozone and 0.5% in the EU28.

In March 2014 compared with March 2013, production in construction increased by 5.2% in the Eurozone and by 5.3% in the EU28.

It said the 0.6% decrease in the Eurozone was a result of building construction falling by 0.7% and civil engineering by 0.6%. In the EU28, the decrease of 0.5 % was said to be because of building construction falling by 0.6% and civil engineering by 0.3%.

The largest decreases were seen in Portugal (3.0%), the Netherlands (2.6%) and Germany (2.2%). The highest increases were seen in Romania (10.3%), Slovenia (8.9%) and Italy (1.9%).

Eurostat said that the Eurozone’s 5.2% increase in March this year over March 2013 was because of building construction rising by 5.0% and civil engineering by 6.3%. In the EU28, the 5.3% increase was attributed to building construction rising by 5.4% and civil engineering by 4.3%.

The highest increases in production in construction were registered in Slovenia (44.9%), Hungary (34.1%), Spain (19.1%) and Poland (18.4%). Eurostat found that the largest decreases were in Portugal (13.8 %), Sweden (2.8%) and Italy (1.4%).

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