Construction workers sought after as building spending jumps

CONSTRUCTION workers grappling with some of the toughest years in memory have been heartened by a predicted 51% jump in building spending by the year 2022.

Industry group Construction Skills Queensland's "Rise" report, released on Thursday, forecasts that concreters, plant operators and structural steel workers will become highly sought after as commercial and residential building projects take the baton from the slowing resources sector.

The Rise report found housing affordability state wide would remain an issue, but even as the mining industry continued to underscore some development, it would be a population boom that would pump up activity.

"When looking at the 10-year trend as a pattern, underlying population growth shows a similar pattern across the state, regardless of resource activity," the report said.

Most regions were expected to have medium or high growth.

CSG chief executive Brett Schimming said that while Queensland's notorious skills crisis might have eased slightly with the cooling of the resources boom, training would be the only way to stop the building industry from overheating.

"We will still need building and construction skills, but where and how these tradespeople work will change," he said.

"There can no longer be one picture for all of Queensland."

This will see more opportunities and demand for those already in building trade apprenticeships.

The 168-page report said regions would have to make hard decisions on how they coped with this impending growth.



CSQ has released forecasts on how much money will be spent on construction for the next decade, with a 10-year growth figure:

  • NORTH CENTRAL Mackay, Isaac and Whitsunday: $19.71b (37% growth from 2012-2022)
  • CENTRAL: Rockhampton, Gladstone, Central Highlands, Banana, Barcaldine and Longreach: $20.69b (41%).
  • WIDE BAY BURNETT: Bundaberg, Fraser Coast, Gympie and North Burnett: $18.9b (51%).
  • DARLING DOWNS: Toowoomba, Western Downs, Maranoa: $12.4b (42%).
  • SOUTH-EAST QUEENSLAND: Sunshine Coast, Moreton Bay, Lockyer Valley, Ipswich, Brisbane, Redland, Logan and Gold Coast: $211b (38%).