The volume of building construction decreased a third last year

According to preliminary data of Statistics Estonia, in 2009 the total production of Estonian construction enterprises in Estonia and in foreign countries amounted to 23.5 billion kroons, which is 28% less than a year earlier. The construction volumes which had started to decline in 2008 kept decreasing last year, too.

The production value of building construction was 14 billion kroons and the production of civil engineering totalled 9 billion kroons. Compared to 2008, the volume of building construction decreased a third and the volume of civil engineering 17%. The decline in construction was mainly caused by the decreased volumes in dwelling construction on domestic construction market. The recession, the restricted loan terms and the offers which exceeded the demand on the new dwellings have decreased the start with new dwelling construction projects. In 2009 building permits were granted for the construction of 2,100 dwellings, which is about a third less than a year earlier.

On the contrary to the domestic construction market which is on a decline stage, in 2009 the construction volume in foreign countries increased 4% compared to the previous year. The growth was caused by the building construction. Although the construction in foreign countries increased, its influence on the construction activity was very small, accounting only for 9% of the total volume of construction.

According to the data of the Construction Works Register, the number of dwelling completions in 2008 was 3,026 — 2,274 dwellings less than in 2008. The average floor area per dwelling increased compared to the previous year because the share of one-family houses grew. In 2009, the average floor area of a completed dwelling was 101 square metres, the year earlier 87. The majority of completed dwellings were situated in Tallinn, followed by the neighbouring rural municipalities of Tallinn and Tartu county.

In 2009, the number of completed non-residential buildings was 964 with the useful floor area of 798,000 square metres. The useful area of office, industrial and commercial buildings increased the most. Compared to 2008, the useful floor area and the cubic capacity of completed non-residential buildings decreased.

If the decrease in the construction volume remained around 30% in the 1st, 2nd and 3rd quarters of 2009, then in the 4th quarter the decline slightly slowed down. In the 4th quarter of 2009, the production value of construction amounted to 5.6 billion kroons, a fourth less compared to the 4th quarter of 2008, of which the construction of buildings decreased 31% and the construction of civil engineering 17%.

Change in construction volume index compared to the previous year, 1999–2009 (percentage)
Year In Estonia and
in foreign countries
of which in Estonia
1999 -18 -13
2000 19 13
2001 4 5
2002 23 26
2003 6 8
2004 13 13
2005 24 21
2006 27 29
2007 17 15
2008 -15 -16
2009 -28 -30

Read more from the Statistics Estonia webpage

Estonia world’s fifth-largest Haiti donor by GDP

Based on Estonia’s gross domestic product, the Baltic nation emerges as the world’s fifth-largest contributor to the Haiti earthquake relief, it appears from data on the website of the British Guardian newspaper.
In the same terms Guyana, one of the poorest nations in South America, was the most generous donor, followed by Ghana and Canada.
Estonia came fifth after Sweden. Denmark, Spain, Finland, Norway and Australia rounded off the top ten. The United States ranked as the country which has pledged the most cash to Haiti with a total of 168 million dollars.
Estonia has allocated close to four million kroons (EUR 256 000), of this 2.5 million kroons to the international Red Cross organisation and 1.35 million kroons to send a rescue team to the quake-ravaged Caribbean nation. The Estonian contribution will grow as the government has decided to extend the stay of the expert mission in Haiti.
In addition, private donations exceeding 852 000 kroons (EUR 54 450) had poured into special accounts of the Red Cross and the Estonian branch of the UN children’s organisation UNICEF by Monday.

Source: Estonian Review