UK construction: signs of deeper recession

UK construction: signs of deeper recession
Published: 17 November 2009

Falling third quarter sales of aggregates and cement provide further evidence of the depth of the UK construction recession the Mineral Products Association has said.

Sales volume of aggregates, cement, ready mixed concrete and asphalt in Q3 again fell significantly in the third quarter compared with the same period of 2008.

Aggregate and cement were around 20 per cent down in the quarter, with ready mixed concrete down 26 per cent and asphalt down 17 per cent.

MPA products are used throughout the construction industry, notably in new work sectors.

Orders for new construction work have declined by 20 per cent in the first nine months of 2009, following a 19 per cent decline in 2008, so construction, aggregates, cement and associated markets will remain depressed for some time.

MPA director of public policy Simon van der Byl said: “The length and severity of the economic and construction recessions means that Government must use the forthcoming Pre-Budget Report to reverse the current policy of cutting public investment by 50 per cent.

“Recent research commissioned by the UK Contractors Group and CBI has confirmed that investment in construction is very effective in stimulating further economic growth and employment, and provides significant long term social and economic benefits.

“There are huge amounts of spare resources available in the construction industry and supply chain and parts of our infrastructure with outstanding backlogs of work, such as highway maintenance – now is precisely the time to get on with this type of work.”