The construction sector in Catalonia is still on the edge despite an expected timid recovery in Europe

The lack of public construction contracts will affect the building sector and make for an unlikely recovery in the industry, according to the Institute for Construction Technologies of Catalonia.

CNA / Laura Pous

July 7, 2010 05:34 PM

Barcelona (CNA).-The construction sector in Catalonia will not fully recover from the recession until at least 2012. The Spanish industry is expected to shrink by 17.7% this year, according to a report from the Institute for Construction Technologies of Catalonia (ITeC). “We won’t get back to normal”, said the Head of Prospectives of ITec, Josep R. Fontana, after presenting the data of this report. 

The building boom was one of the main causes of the economic recession in the Spanish State. Therefore the construction sector will be one of the latest to find the path towards recovery. The cuts on public construction funding are expected to cause a 24% fall on the contracts in 2010. The data is concerning for the industry, because civil engineering works were one of the core elements to an eventual recovery. “We expected a decrease in public construction, but we did not expect it so soon”, said Fontana.

Spain will register one of the worst records in the sector in Europe. At an European level, the industry is expected to shrink by 4% in 2010, with an initial increase of 1.2% in the next year. Experts indicate that civil engineering works and private construction would lead the recovery in Europe.

The residential sector has fallen by 80% since 2006, and it is not expected to recover between 2011 and 2012. In fact, the data shows a further shrinkage of 10% for this year, and 5% in 2011.

Fontana also said that the property market is “recovering” in the country, but only because 2009 was a “disastrous” year. According to him, until the 'stock' of empty new flats and homes is sold, the residential construction market will not recover completely.