Building permits declined 15.5% in October

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Construction activity declined in October with approved building permits dropping 15.5% to 583 from 690 in the previous month of 2020, although Nicosia and Famagusta districts made gains.

According to official data published on Wednesday, the value of building permits rose to €279.3 mln in October from €201.6 mln in the previous month.

The total area covered was 239,300 square metres to build 903 homes from 201,600 square metres in September.

The rise in both the value and total area attributed to more large projects for which permits were issued in October.

For the 10 months to October 2020, 5,689 building permits were issued, down 3% compared to 5,864 in the same period of 2019, reflecting the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

The total value of these permits decreased by 24.3%, the total area by 9.8% while the number of dwelling units increased 1.3%.

Building permits in the capital Nicosia for 10 months to October rose by 7.1% year on year with 2,217 building permits issued from 2,070, while building permits also rose in Famagusta by 5.03% with 271 permits issued compared with 258 in the same period of 2019.

Larnaca registered the largest annual decrease in building permits with a 14.5% dip year on year as permits issued dropped to 768 from 898 in January – October 2019.

Permits issued in Limassol during January – October 2020 declined by 7.4% year on year with permits dropping to 1,648 from 1,780 while building permits in Paphos fell annually by 8.5% with permits issued amounting to 785 from 858.

Building permits constitute a leading indicator of future activity in the construction sector.