Government should press ahead with proposed €1bn construction investment but it must be targeted on ‘needs assessment’ basis

Surveyors call for publication of Forfas Construction Industry Report 

Tuesday 28th May 2013. The Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland (SCSI) has
urged the Government to proceed with a proposed €1bn investment fund for the
construction sector but has said it must be targeted.

 

The Society was responding to reports that the Government is examining the scope
in next year’s budget for an investment programme of this magnitude.

 

The SCSI said that the investment would provide much needed funding for the
construction of new healthcare facilities, schools and commercial space to assist with
international competitiveness. It would also provide much needed jobs in an industry
which has seen a 60 per cent decline in employment since the peak.

 

The President of the SCSI Micheál O’Connor said the construction sector had gone
through seven difficult years of contraction and a stimulus package was urgently
required.

 

“Currently output is half of what it should be for an economy the size of Ireland. Given
that tender prices are now approximately one third lower than they were at the peak,
we believe now is the time to invest in the sector as there is greater value to be had
in investing in construction projects now compared to previous years. However given
the current climate it is vital the proposed €1bn investment is targeted and allocated
to projects on a strictly enforced needs-assessment basis ” O’Connor said.

 

The SCSI also referred to the forthcoming publication of the Forfas report on the
Construction Industry. The Report which has been supported by SCSI and the wider
construction sector, sets out many important reforms relating to how the construction
industry monitors activity, engages with public clients and how it ensures it has the
capacity and skills to serve emerging new clients.

 

“The Forfas report is of vital importance to the construction industry if it is to grow and
serve the Irish economy and we urge Government to publish it at the earliest
opportunity” said O’Connor.

 

Referring to the recent of the pyrite remediation scheme, the SCSI said that the
financial supports were a welcome step towards resolving the difficulties being faced
by owners of around 12,000 units affected by pyrite.

 

“While it could take several years for the true extent of the pyrite damage to
materialize, the fact that Government is taking proactive measures to assist affected homeowners is to be welcomed and the new http://www.pyriteboard.ie website will also
provide further clarity and transparency for homeowners, in addition to the
comprehensive report of the Pyrite Panel, published last year”, concluded O’Connor.