UK construction value up 5.5%

By Leila Steed29 July 2019

Barbour ABI chart showing the share of construction contracts awarded in June 2019 by region in the UK

Barbour ABI chart showing the share of construction contracts awarded in June 2019 by region in the UK

The latest edition of Barbour ABI’s Economic & Construction Market Review showed a 5.5% increase in the value of construction contracts awarded from May to June 2019 in the UK.

A total of £5.2 billion (€5.7 billion) worth of construction contracts were awarded in June, based on a three-month rolling average. The figures showed that the infrastructure sector had the largest share at 37.2% due to the SPRS Construction Programme at the Sellafield Site – valued at £1.5 billion (€1.6 billion). The second largest sector was residential with 33.1% - down from 42.3% in May.

The industry and analysis company said the dominating position of the two leading sectors (infrastructure and residential) in June meant that all other construction industry sectors had a share of less than 10% of the value of contract awards.

In addition, the review also highlighted a shift in the value of contracts awarded across UK regions. The north east of England had the highest share of contracts awarded, with 36.3% no other region in the UK had a share of more than 14%.

Commenting on the figures, Tom Hall, chief economist at Barbour ABI said, “London has dominated project awards every month in 2019. However, for the first time this year, we see a shift in the spread of project awards across the country. Likewise, for the first time this year, we see infrastructure investment overtake the residential sector which has been the most active sector of construction for over six months.”

According to the review, construction activity for June had a more even spread of contract awards across the UK.

London dominated in only two of the eight sectors with a 26.3% share in residential market and a 23.7% in the commercial & retail areas, while the East Midlands region dominated the industrial sector, largely due to investment in warehousing and storage.

The South West took the top spot for hotel, leisure & sport and Scotland boasted the lion’s share of projects in the medical & health and education sectors.

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