Tuesday, October 19, 2021
October 13, 2021

Construction growth to outpace manufacturing this decade, says new global forecast

Pent-up household savings, pandemic stimulus programmes and population growth will combine to spur average annual growth of 3.6% between now and 2030, propelling construction’s expansion ahead of growth in both manufacturing and services, say the authors of “Future of Construction”, a forecast produced by Oxford Economics and Marsh McLennan companies Marsh and Guy Carpenter.

Growth will be concentrated in a handful of countries, with just four – China, India, US and Indonesia – accounting for some 58% of projected global expansion.

However, the forecast contains some surprises, such as growth in UK infrastructure averaging 3.7% a year to rival China as UK mega projects begin.

Graham Robinson, global infrastructure lead at Oxford Economics and the report’s lead author, said it was unusual to see construction outstripping growth in both services and manufacturing over a sustained period.

“But it’s not surprising that construction is expected to power the global economy over this next decade, considering the unprecedented nature of stimulus spending on infrastructure by governments and the unleashing of excess household savings in the wake of Covid,” he added.

Authors say extra output in the decade will amount to $4.5 trillion, giving construction an output worth $15.2 trillion by 2030 and 13.5% of global GDP.

“Huge levels of excess household savings have built up across advanced economies,” said Jeremy Leonard, managing director of industry services at Oxford Economics and an author of the report.

“In North America, we estimate excess savings at well over 10% of GDP. Even under very conservative estimates of how much of this excess savings will be spent, the growth profile across most developed countries will be strong through 2022.”

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