According to the Construction Industry Federation (CIF), the value of construction activity should increase to around €11bn in 2014. This would be up from the estimated €9.9bn value noted in 2013, which itself was an improvement on the €9.07bn worth of activity seen in 2012.
According to the CSO, construction sector employment levels grew by 9,100 between the first and third quarters last year. “We expect to see a strong increase in construction activity during the course of the coming year. For the first time in seven years there are a lot of reasons for the construction sector to have a positive outlook for the upcoming year,” said CIF director general Tom Parlon.
The Federation points to the near €7bn worth of large and medium-sized projects scheduled for this year, as recorded by Construction Information Services; the further roll-out of €2bn in working capital and the same amount in seed finance promised by Nama and more projects under the National Stimulus Plan progressing to on-site activity.
Mr Parlon added: “The sector turned the corner in 2013 and all the expectation is we will see further growth during the year.”
Forthcoming new building regulations, a register of Irish construction firms and legislation to boost the flow of payments across the industry will also improve positivity, he said.
The sentiments were echoed by Nama yesterday. Chairman Frank Daly said it was his belief that Ireland’s property crash was over and that the recovery being seen in the Dublin market should spread to other parts of the country.