2021 construction output suspected to be 6.4% lower than pre-Covid growth rates

Despite the government putting industry at the centre of its recovery plans, the full impact of Covid-19 is expected to spell uncertainty for the construction industry. According to the Construction Products Association’s (CPA) latest forecasting, changes to the UK economy brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic, and uncertainty around consumer confidence and unemployment rates, could prove significant to construction industry activity returning to pre-Covid growth rates. Although activity on-site returned quicker than initially expected post-lockdown, the CPA Summer Scenarios still anticipates construction output in 2020 to fall by 20.6%. The worst affected sectors include private housing (-33%) and commercial (-29%). The report suggests that returns to construction sites from mid-May were largely to drive completions on existing projects and refurbishments that couldn’t take place during the restrictions. However, uncertainty remains around long-term demand and future orders given the state of the wider economy.

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