Official figures confirm slide in Spanish construction industry

Brussels confirms a drop of more than 10% in the building sector in Spain

Production in the construction sector of the Spanish economy registered a fall of 10.1% over the last year from March 2007 to March 2008 – the heaviest fall out of all the Eurozone states who provided figures. Most notably Ireland has not provided information on the state of its construction industry which has also been badly affected by the downturn in the property market.

In any case, the sharp drop registered in the construction industry in Spain is much worse than the average for other Eurozone states which is 1.4% for the same period. The average drop for all EU member states is even less at 0.1%.

Out of the twelve countries that provided information for this 12 month period those that experienced growth in the property market were Rumania (32.5%), Sweden (23.2%) and Slovenia (22.2%); while the largest falls in this sector were registered in Spain with a drop of 10.1% followed closely by Portugal with a drop of 6.

5%. The economies of Ireland and the UK also believed to have been badly affected by the slowdown in their property markets.

In Ireland activity in the construction industry fell by 14% in the last quarter of 2007 compared to the same period in 2006. This means that Ireland could be experiencing a similar fall in production in the construction industry as Spain.
By sectors, activity in the construction of buildings has gone down by 2.1% in the Eurozone and 0.8% for the whole of the EU following rises registered in February of 3% and 5% respectively.

In the sector of public works production in the Eurozone went up by 1.3% and by 4.2% for the whole of the EU. However, if monthly figures are compared then the outlook is gloomy with a fall of 2.2% for the Eurozone and 2.5% for the whole of the EU.

According to Eurostat, which provided the statistics, out of the EU member states that supplied information the biggest monthly falls between February and March have been registered in Germany (12.

3%), Slovenia (12.2%) and the UK (9.0%) compared to a drop of 1.7% in the Spanish sector for this period.

On the other hand, only Sweden and Poland increased production in the construction sector in March with rises of 5.1% and 1.4% respectively.