Housebuilding to “pick up the baton” for Scottish construction growth


HOUSEBUILDING will be at the forefront of growth in Scotland’s construction sector over the next five years, according to new research which predicts overall growth in the industry will be much lower than south of the border.

The latest Construction Skills Network (CSN) forecast from the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) predicts that both public housing (3.6%) and private housing (4.1%) will show “sustained and solid growth” during this period. The report revealed that repair and maintenance work on existing buildings is also improving, with a year on year average of 2.3%.

These sectors are tipped to “pick up the baton” of driving growth from infrastructure as high-profile projects such as the Queensferry Crossing come to an end.

The CITB research found that Scotland’s overall construction growth over the next five years will be 0.5% per year. To put that in perspective, the UK average will be 2.5%.

The report went on to state that the Scottish construction industry will need to find more than 21,000 new workers between now and 2020.

Steve Radley, director of policy at CITB, said, “Scottish construction has had an incredible few years, operating at record highs, with a string of major infrastructure projects delivered. This report shows that housebuilding will now take over as the prime driver of growth. With over 21,000 new workers needed over the next few years, there remain excellent, rewarding career opportunities in construction. We want to support firms in Scotland to take on apprentices, and upskill their workforce, while encouraging young people to join the industry to help construction grow in years to come.”