Building sector upbeat as turnover reaches a new high

Building on both offices and homes in Amsterdam’s Zuidas district. Photo:

Turnover in the building sector rose by 5.5% year-on-year in the first quarter of 2017, the national statistics office CBS said on Wednesday.

Business confidence in the building sector was the highest of all industrial sectors at the beginning of the second quarter of this year, and at its highest level since 2008. Construction companies expect sales and jobs number to continue to increase.

Companies in the civil (houses and buildings) and utility sectors saw sales rise by 9.5% in the first quarter of 2017, the tenth consecutive quarter in which sales were higher. But the total now lies some 14% lower than the level reached in early 2008, the CBS said.

Companies involved in groundwork, roads and waterworks booked an increase of 4.1%,  its first increase in four quarters. This was boosted by work on rails and tunnels which registered 6% growth.

A total of 14,361 new houses were completed in the first quarter, nearly 40% up on  the year-earlier period and the fourth consecutive quarter of increases. Building licenses were granted for a further 15,571 new homes in the first quarter of 2017, a 43% increase.

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