The latest Euroconstruct Conference held in Vienna, issued its revised forecasts for 19 European construction markets for 2007 to 2009 and released new forecasts for 2010. Overall, there were slight downward revisions to 2007’s estimates (-20bps, or -0.2%, to 2.0%) led by the new residential market (-240bps (–2.4%)), particularly in Western Europe (-220bps –2.2%). The revisions for 2008 and 2009 were also modest, -10bps in 2008 to 1.4% and +20bps in 2009 to 1.6% (note analysts at Goodbody, Dublin).
The Netherlands is expected to be amongst the best performers in 2007 with growth of 5.5% (revised up 20bps). However, the pace of growth is expected to slow to 3.2% in 2008 (revised down from 3.6%, previously), 2.2% in 2009 and 1.3% in 2010.
Ireland’s forecast for 2008 was revised down markedly by 650bps to -6.5%, impacted by the well-documented weak
housing backdrop which follows an expected decline of 1.5% this year, before recovering in 2009 to grow by 5.7%. These forecasts are based on housing completions of 77k this year and 60k for both 2008 and 2009.
Elsewhere, there are mixed signals from core Europe, with German forecasts scaled back by 10-160bps to 1.0% in 2007, 1.6% in 2008 , 2.2% in 2009 and 1.2% in 2010. While forecasts have generally been increased for both France and Switzerland, growth is expected to be relatively lacklustre at 1.5%/1.6%%in 2008 and 1.4%/0.5% in 2009.
Poland is expected to be the strongest performing country throughout the forecast period, with average growth per annum of over 12%; and Finland’s construction market growth is estimated to be over 6% this year, driven by nonresidential, however, this will slow to 2.5% next year, before declining by 3.1% in 2009 and -1.6% in 2010.