Sales of construction equipment increase
Sales of construction plant machinery have recovered strongly since the recession but are still nowhere near the Celtic Tiger peak, said the organiser of Ireland's biggest 'digger' sales event.
An uptick in housebuilding by smaller construction companies over the past year saw 2,500 individual pieces of new "yellow plant" machinery sold, up from 2,200 units in 2017, said Brian Coogan, director of the Construction and Quarry Machinery Show (CQMS) Just 300 units sold during 2010 when the construction crash was at its worst. But sales still lag far behind the 5,000 pieces of machinery sold on average during the peak years of the boom.
"Construction equipment dealers can't get their hands on this machinery fast enough at the moment. Demand is really coming from small firms building houses," he said.
But, despite the increase in sales, Coogan said there was a feeling in the sector that it was still operating well below full speed because of the lack of investment by the Government into major capital projects.
The CQMS show - which takes place at Punchestown Racecourse in June - is the biggest sales event of its type in Ireland and is held every second year. Over 10,000 visitors are expected to view the €70m worth of machinery that will be on site. Coogan estimated that the value of finance deals at the 2019 show would be in the region of €5 to €6m.
Coogan - who also publishes Machinery Movers magazine - said CQMS "provides a really strong barometer as to how the economy is actually performing given that it is in constant touch with all the 2,200 machinery operators in the country involved in all civil, plant, civil engineering and infrastructural build projects."
Sunday Indo Business