Construction activities decline in Q4

The country has yet to see an improvement in construction activities despite the gradual reopening of the economy, latest data from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) showed.

Approved building permits showed a decline due to lack of demand.

Construction activities showed an almost 50 percent drop in the value of building works during the last quarter of 2020, the PSA said.

Based on the Philippine Statistics Authority’s Construction Statistics, total value of construction activities plummeted 46.6 percent to P63 billion during the period from P118 billion in 2019.

It was also down compared to the P67.7 billion in the third quarter of 2020.

This as the number of construction projects during the period declined to 31,026 from 39,242 projects in 2019.

Even with the gradual re-opening of the economy since last year, appetite for construction activities have yet to resume as limited capacity among workers is still in place.

Of the different developments, residential projects totaling 21,892 made up 71 percent of construction during the period.

The PSA noted that this type of construction, majority of which were single-type houses, contracted by 20 percent annually.

Total value shrank 41 percent to P32.6 billion.

The same decline was seen in commercial projects.

Mostly commercial buildings, non-residential developments, also declined 29 percent. It comprised 15 percent of the total construction activities during the period.

Value of non-residential construction dipped 53.3 percent to P26 billion during the period.

The rest were additions and alterations and repairs of existing structures.

By area, building activity was still strongest in Calabarzon with 6,368 constructions or 21 percent share to the total. It was followed by Ilocos and Central Luzon.

By value, however, the National Capital Region accounted for 22 percent of the total at P13.6 billion.

It was followed by Calabarzon with P11.1 billion and Central Luzon with P8.2 billion.

The total floor area of construction for the quarter was recorded at 5.8 million square meters, which indicated a decline of 39.6 percent annually.

With subdued activity, the average cost in the fourth quarter declined by 12.7 percent to P10,176 per square meter, with residential buildings being the most expensive at P10,590 per square meter.

Among residential construction, condominiums had the highest average cost at P15,271.

Construction statistics are generated from approved building permits as well as from the demolition and fencing permits collected every month by PSA field personnel from the offices of local building officials.