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Forecaster rules out work getting under way at Hinkley Point C before 2018

Hinkley Point C aerial CGI 2

Exclusive: A leading forecaster has excluded main works at Hinkley Point C from its projections as concerns over the scheme’s future continue to grow.

Forecasts from Hewes & Associates shared exclusively with Construction News show that works at the new nuclear project are yet to be factored into its infrastructure output projections between 2016 and 2018.

The forecasts are not included despite the fact that Hinkley Point C’s construction site director Nigel Cann told Construction News last month that work could restart at the site “in weeks”.

Check out our in-depth analysis of the forecasts

A final investment decision for the project was left off the agenda at the EDF board meeting yesterday.

Hewes & Associates founder Martin Hewes said the forecasts had “parked nuclear to one side”, both for work at Hinkley and any future work at the £10bn Wylfa Newydd nuclear plant.

“If they say new nuclear projects will get under way in three years, then that’ll be more like six,” he said.

Hewes & Associates has yet to factor Hinkley Point C into any of its forecasts, despite the award of contracts including its £2bn civils deal to Laing O’Rourke/ Bouygues.

According to the forecasts, infrastructure output will peak at £18.28bn in 2016, before falling to £17.5bn in 2017 and £17.3bn in 2018.

However, forecasts from the Construction Products Association have factored in works at Hinkley getting under way from 2018 onwards, the first time the project has been included as part of the CPA’s projections.

The inclusion of works at Hinkley, among other projects, puts the CPA’s forecast nearly 40 per cent higher than those from Hewes & Associates by 2018.

However, both forecasters are now factoring in work on HS2 for the first time, with main works expected to get underway in 2018, a year behind the project’s official start date.

Forecasts from Hewes & Associates also show that weakening new work in the commercial sector, especially in retail, will lead to private housing becoming the largest sector by output volume in 2016.

 

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