Construction has largely recovered from the pandemic, but that recovery is coming with an inflationary cost, according to the latest Arcadis International Construction Costs Index. The return to more stable trading follows a volatile 2021 that saw iron ore double its US price and world steel prices soar. Australia performed better than many on the construction costs/steel price volatility scale, finishing in the middle of Arcadis’s world index.
Skills shortages will get worse, and this will become the “challenge of the decade” for construction, the index warns. Businesses that invest in the industry’s transformation will find themselves in a market-leading position in an industry that underpins the Australian economy, Arcadis says.
Meanwhile ASI trade credit insurance broker NCI says a renewed emphasis by the ATO on recouping outstanding tax debts and a tightened labour market increases the risk of steel industry insolvencies. Specific to steel, the number of insurance claims to NCI for bad debts rose 62% and the value rose 170% in 2022 compared to 2021. “This will not only make businesses more vulnerable to failure but those failures will hit harder than they would have previously,” a spokesperson said. Steel industry members with concerns are urged to contact NCI on 1800 882 820 or firstname.lastname@example.org