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Outlook for commercial construction strongest in years


The value of non-residential building approvals jumped by 14.8 per cent in February, adding to growth of 18 per cent over the previous 12 months according to the latest ABS data.

“It confirms the strongest outlook that commercial construction has enjoyed in years and that the long awaited upturn in the sector is underway,” Matthew Pollock, National Manager Economics and Housing said.

“Better still, the pipeline of non-residential construction projects is broad based, with the data showing strong growth across a wide range of sectors, including for new offices, factories, warehouses, aged care facilities, education, entertainment and accommodation buildings,” he said.

“Master Builders expects non-residential building activity to grow by 14.6% in 2017/18, with the value of work done estimated at just over $41.5 billion,” Matthew Pollock said.

“New dwelling approvals fell by 6 per cent in February and are down by around 600 new dwellings compared to the same month last year. The fall in new starts is a good indicator that new housing commencements are likely to moderate towards the latter half of 2018,” he said.

“However, approvals for new renovations continue to perform strongly, supporting an expectation of an elevated level of work in 2018 and laying the foundations for a forecast boom in alterations and additions over the next five years,” Matthew Pollock said.

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