Overwhelming majority of respondents to CECA survey also report rising costs

Civils contractors are seeing workloads decline and costs rising according to a new survey by the Civil Engineering Contractors Association.

Covering the first quarter of the year, 43% of respondents to the workload trends survey reported a fall in their workload compared with the same period last year. Only 16% of firms said their workload had increased.

The CECA survey also revealed that rising inflation was pushing costs up. According to 76% of respondents, costs were on the increase while 42% said prices were rising faster than a year ago.

In more positive news CECA members reported growth in the rail, water and power sectors.

However growth was not sufficient enough to offset continuing decline in road work.

Commenting on the survey results Alasdair Reisner, director of external affairs with CECA, said:

“While signs of growth in rail and power are certainly welcome, the fact that the overwhelming balance of respondents reported continuing falls in workload is a real cause for concern.

“CECA is hopeful that the policies now being implemented by Infrastructure UK and others will support a return to growth in the civil engineering sector.

“However the results of this survey demonstrate that, for an industry being squeezed between rising costs and falling tender prices, the government has no time to lose in taking important measures to streamline procurement and encourage private sector investment.”