The Wokingham Paper

Regional construction down but rates will rise, says RICS

THE SOUTH EAST’S construction workload has fallen – but it’s predicted to bounce back in the new year.

According to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), workloads have dropped for another quarter due to the coronavirus pandemic.

In its latest Construction and Infrastructure Market Survey, it reported that across all sectors, workload rates fell by 8% between July and September.

However, this is far less than the previous drop of 37% between April and June.

Financial constraints, a shortage of materials, and a lack of demand for construction work are the main reasons for the decline, according to RICS.

“With a new lockdown underway, these are clearly very challenging times for the economy,” said Simon Rubinsohn, chief economist at RICS.

But looking ahead, the RICS predicts infrastructure workloads will rise in the coming year as the construction sector recovers from the pandemic.

“The government’s commitment to delivering on its infrastructure programme provides a ray of light with the survey pointing towards a solid increase in workloads over the next 12 months.

“This could play an important role in helping to drive a wider recovery in business activity,” Mr Rubinsohn added.

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