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Fall in infrastructure demand stalls construction industry

New contracts worth £4.9bn were awarded in February, according to industry analyst Barbour ABI, marking a 24% drop on the same period last year.

Figures released by Barbour in its latest Economic and Construction Market Review show that the residential market helped offset a drop in infrastructure demand and accounted for £2.1bn of new contacts, which is the highest figure for six months.

Infrastructure contract values fell by 48% in February from £1.7bn last year to £875M this year, despite the largest contract awarded last month – the £350M Hinckley Point C marine works package - falling into this sector.

“While the slide in Infrastructure is disappointing, it is encouraging to see the increases in value for the majority of the construction sectors, particularly commercial and retail, which was in the middle of a three-month slump,” said Barbour ABI lead economist Michael Dall. “With uncertainty surrounding the industry and economy in general, improvements in various sectors should instil confidence, despite the overall figure being subdued.”

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