Conditions in the real estate and construction sectors remain gloomy, with a mere 2,751 new homes being built across Greece in the first four months of the year, down 5 percent from an already low figure over the same period last year, according to statistical agency ELSTAT.
Last year, construction fell because of national elections and the uncertainty during the new government’s negotiations with the country’s creditors. It was hoped that the relative stabilization of the political climate this year would have improved the picture in the construction sector.
Reflecting the lack of interest in the sector, the general index for construction materials dropped 1.8 percent in July from the same month last year, which had recorded a drop of 1.7 percent from July 2014. In terms of volume, private construction over the five-month period to May was down 21.2 percent, from a rise of 15.7 percent during the same period last year. New building permits dropped 16.3 percent in the five-month period, after rising 2.4 percent a year earlier.
Eurobank recently reported a 40-billion-euro drop in fixed capital investment between 2007 and 2015, or 66.1 percent. The drop was felt mainly in the housing market, which lost 23.8 billion euros, followed by machinery and equipment (12.1 billion) and other types of construction.