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Energy costs fail to dampen output

RISING energy costs are still squeezing contractors and materials manufacturers' margins and driving up tender prices.

But output strengthened during the second quarter of 2006 despite the increases, according to the latest joint Trade Survey Report from the Construction Products Association and the Construction Confederation.

The rise in output was driven by a recovery in Government funded projects and contractors are hopeful that further growth will continue throughout the third quarter.

Construction Confederation chief executive Stephen Ratcliffe said: 'It is welcome to see that building contractors anticipate the current upturn in activity will be sustained.

'It is also important that this growth is achieved through both public and private sector work as this gives the industry a broad base to build on.'