Companies across Tyrone that are connected with the construction trade are now feeling the full financial ramifications of Stormont’s ongoing collapse.
Reported at the weekend, a recent survey by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) suggested that many building contractors – as well as other businesses in the construction industry’s orbit – saw their workloads fall in the second quarter of 2023.
It is believed that budgetary constraints and the absence of a devolved government are at least partly responsible for the pressures being experienced.
Since the DUP brought down power-sharing in the North in protest over the Northern Ireland Protocol, state investment in infrastructure has been hampered and other public spending mechanisms have been jammed.
One local building contractor said he had ‘little hope’ for the future of the county’s construction trade.
“Stormont’s collapse is affecting the building trade both directly and indirectly,” he began.
“There is not as much money being spent on new government-financed developments, and your average person does not have as much money to invest in property.
“I have been sitting with empty houses in Douglas Bridge for ages, and I just cannot get rid of them.
“They are in a nice area, they are fairly priced, but young people just do not have the money to secure a mortgage and get on the property ladder.”
The contractor, who requested not to be named, said that he had no faith in either Stormont or Westminster to provide the economy with the support which he believes it needs.
“Interest rates are going through the roof, and the market needs a helping hand, but Stormont is as good as gone, and Westminster does not seem to care one bit about us,” he said.
“When it comes to what is in store for us in the next few years, your guess is as good as mine.
“All I know is that I am not holding my breath for the government to step in and save the day.”
Source: Ulster Herald