Value of construction activity spiked 22% in 2016 to EUR 2.14 bln
According to the ‘Construction and Housing Statistics 2016’ survey released Thursday, the production value of Cyprus’ building sector increased 22.2% to EUR 2.146 bln from EUR 1.756 bln the year before. The value added at current prices shows an increase of 23.5%.
More new and bigger homes were built – with Limassol leading the way - while the number of jobless in the sector also fell – many observers would attribute the upturn to the passport for investment scheme kicking in.
The scheme encourages foreign investors to buy new properties as a pathway to citizenship.
Cyprus construction activity registered a rise of 20.7% compared to a marginal 0.2% upturn in 2015, based on the production index of the sector.
The share of new construction of residential buildings is 50.8% of the total, non-residential buildings is 27.7%, while civil engineering projects accounted for 21.5%.
For 2015 the figures were 48.9% residential, 27.3% non-residential and 23.7% civil engineering projects.
The number of full-time employees in the sector increased from 19,242 to 21,130 persons in 2016. Those registered as unemployed decreased from 5,295 to 4,094.
The price index of construction materials decreased 1.7%, following on from a 2.7% decline in 2015.
The number of new homes completed increased 7.5% to 2,570 housing units from 2,390.
By district, more new homes were built in Limassol (791) followed by Nicosia (745), Larnaca (469), Paphos (395) and Famagusta (170).
The average area per unit built was bigger at 239 sqm for houses and 150 sqm for apartments, compared to 216 and 134 respectively in 2015.
The cost of construction per square metre (excluding the value of land) increased from EUR 1,009 in 2015 to EUR 1,018 for houses and from EUR 839.6 in 2015 to EUR 902.3 for apartments.
The housing stock at the end of 2016 amounted to 449,000 dwelling units, of which 60.9% were in urban areas.