CIOB responds to today’s construction output figures
The latest GDP figures for July 2019, produced by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), found that in the three months to July, GDP growth was 0%. Following a contraction of 0.2% in quarter 2 (April to June) 2019, the latest GDP figure highlights how subdued growth has been over the past three months, in part due to the uncertainty surrounding Brexit and the current global economy.
In the three months to July 2019, growth in construction was negative (0.8%) due to the fall in demand for private housing repair and maintenance and “public other new work”. With a slowdown in the economy and businesses halting investment due to the economic uncertainties, it is no surprise that the output for construction contracted over the past three months.
In an economy reliant on the built environment, construction is central to improving the current economic climate. It is vital that the government take necessary steps to ensure the construction industry remains strong during this uncertain time and to inject the industry with support for trained professionals in order to maintain and grow the built environment.
Caroline Gumble, Chief Executive at the CIOB, comments:
“Construction contributes 6% to the UK’s GDP and the industry needs to improve its collaboration with government to deliver. A priority that remains for the industry is access to skilled staff which would allow the industry to innovate and be more productive. However, the current apprenticeship system is flawed and hinders businesses within the sector to hire and develop new talent. It is vital for the government to address this issue if we want to see a boost in the UK’s economy and ensure that we do not fall into a recession.
“Another way to support the industry is through focused investment on housing repair and maintenance; this would offer a stable pipeline of activity for the industry, as well as an opportunity to improve the quality of our homes.”
For more information on the latest trends in the UK construction sector, visit the CIOB website: www.ciob.org
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