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Market survey

2 MAR 2023

Global Construction Monitor

The Global Construction monitors are a sentiment indicator of the construction and infrastructure markets in the UK, Europe, Asia Pacific, North America, Middle East and Africa.

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Highlights from Q4 Global Construction Monitor

In Q4, the global Construction Activity Index (CAI) improved slightly from +3 to +8 driven by a strengthening outlook in the infrastructure sector, where a net balance of +23% respondents reported an increase in workloads.

From a regional perspective, the Middle East and Africa region displayed the strongest momentum, with the headline index rising from +20 to +25. Meanwhile the feedback is flatter in Europe and APAC despite the latest CAI moving up from -10 to -2 and from -1 to +7 respectively.

At a global level, cost of materials, financial constraints, along with skills and labour shortages were considered to be the main factors holding back construction activity, even though material and labour cost projections are a little less elevated than previously.

Key insights from regions covered in this quarter’s report include

UK: Over 2,000 RICS professionals provided their insights across the UK construction industry in Q4. The challenging macro environment appeared to be increasingly impacting the market, with the headline net balance for workloads dropping to -1% from +17% previously. This easing is most visible in private residential sector, evidenced by a net balance of -13% of respondents reporting a fall in workloads against a reading of +17% in Q3.

Asia Pacific: This region has seen a slight pick-up in momentum across the industry in Q4 with the latest Construction Activity Index of +7 (an increase from -1 previously).

Europe: There was an overall stagnant trend of construction activity in the last quarter despite the latest CAI moving from -10 to -2.

Middle East and Africa:  The CAI picked up to +25 from an already solid reading of +20 seen in the previous quarter. Saudi Arabia and Nigeria stand out with their particularly strong CAI readings at +65 and +62.

Americas: The outlook of private residential workload remains marginally negative across the Americas with the net balance of -2%. On the contrary, workloads for the private non-residential sector are envisaged to rise over the next 12 months in the Americas.

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