Slower growth expected for MENA construction in 2019: GlobalData report

16965286108 8f5e4d5747 cSaudi Arabia remains the largest regional construction market in the Middle East, despite a contraction in construction in the kingdom in recent years, according to a report from data and analytics company GlobalData

Global Construction Outlook to 2023 - Q3 2019 Update says construction in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region has been relatively sluggish and is forecast to grow at 3.3 per cent in 2019, with the pace of growth then accelerating throughout the forecast period to reach 4.9 per cent by 2022-2023.

Construction output is forecast to recover in 2019, growing by 2.6 per cent, before posting average growth of 3.8 per cent in 2020-2023.

Yasmine Ghozzi, the economist at GlobalData, commented, “The construction market started on a positive note in Saudi Arabia in 2019, growing by 1.3 per cent y-o-y in Q1 in real value-add terms, attributed to rising oil prices and a surge in the non-crude sector.

“The significance of construction in Saudi Arabia is accentuated by major transport and mobility schemes such as Riyadh Metro, social infrastructure developments such as the Ministry of Housing’s Sakani program, and energy megaprojects such as the state-owned Aramco’s Berri and Marjan oil fields.”

Construction output decreased by 1.2 per cent y-o-y in Q1 2019, a sharp deceleration after years of rapid expansion.

One of the region’s brightest spots will be Egypt, where GlobalData predicts that construction will expand by an annual average of 11.3 per cent between 2019 and 2023.

“Egypt’s economy is forecast to expand at a relatively rapid rate over the next two years, driven by sustained growth in natural gas production and a recovery in tourism. Delivering an ambitious renewable energy program is a priority for the government. Construction activity is also being driven by Cairo’s urban development programme, which could involve building 23 new cities,” Ghozzi concluded.

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