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Best year in a decade ahead for commercial construction sector

Master Builders Australia says the vital contribution that the building and construction sector makes to a stronger economy in every city, town and region around the country has been confirmed by the release of the latest ABS building activity data yesterday.

“The data shows the nation’s second largest industry ended last year strongly, with the value of work done growing by 8 per cent in the last quarter of 2017 and contributing more than $28 billion to the national economy,” said CEO Denita Wawn.

“That’s $28 billion that is creating employment, providing young people with the skills they need to be job ready and build rewarding careers and it’s supporting more than 360,000 small building businesses that build prosperity in every community,” she said.

“The value of work for new residential construction fell by 5.4 per cent in the quarter, supporting an outlook for a more moderate year for new residential construction in 2018,” Denita Wawn said.

“However, this fall was more than offset by a surge in the non-residential sector which saw new commercial construction activity grow by 14.8 per cent in the December quarter 2017,” she said.

“This very positive result for non-residential construction supports Master Builders’ outlook for a boom in non-residential building activity over the next 12 months,” Denita Wawn said.

“2018 is shaping up to be the best year for commercial builders for more than a decade. Total commercial construction activity is expected to contribute $42 billion to the economy in 2017-18, with the sector expected to grow by 14.6 per cent” she said.

“The timing couldn’t be better with the expected moderation expected in the value of residential construction work and another year of consolidation in the engineering sector,” Denita Wawn said.

“Better yet, the new commercial construction projects driving the upswing create new jobs and opportunities for workers whose work on major high density residential projects may be finishing over the next 12 months or so,” Denita Wawn said.

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