The construction sector is central to ending the cycle of boom and bust in the Irish economy, the president of the Construction Industry Federation (CIF) has said. Dominic Doheny was speaking at the annual CIF conference today, and said the government’s efforts to end volatility in the Irish economy will be influenced by whether the construction industry can become more productive and efficient.
“This is our last chance to end the boom and bust cycle that has plagued the construction industry throughout our history,” he said. “We have a unique opportunity to build a sustainable, stable industry in this economic cycle. With our partners in Government, we are taking steps now to do this. “If we can continue to collaborate as we have been in the past few years on issues such as diversity, productivity and procurement, I think we should be ambitious enough to say we can end boom and bust. “We have built and rebuilt Ireland many times, it’s now time for us to build a sustainable industry.”
Mr Doheny said the CIF will be developing a national research strategy for the industry next year, with phase one of this process being launched in partnership with Galway/Mayo IT. “We will be bringing all researchers across the Institutes of Technology and key CIF members in November to identify a shared research agenda. I want this to be seen as the first step on a road to the creation of a state-owned research body for construction in the form and scale of Teagasc,” he said. The conference featured national and international industry leaders, as well as an address from Minister for Housing Eoghan titled ‘Building the Future’.
“One of the things that I have noticed in Irish public life is this attempt to divide the public sector and the private sector, and one is good and one is bad depending on where you are standing,” he told attendees. “A lot of the people in this room will have worked in both and are currently working in the private sector; I think that dichotomy is nonsense. “The point of Project Ireland 2040 was to give us that same destination that we could work to; We have that now and my ambition as Minister and our ambition as government is that through these new bodies and processes we have established, we can all work together to making Ireland the kind of Ireland we want to live in, which is the Ireland laid out in Project Ireland 2040.”
On the recently announced Land Development Agency (LDA) Minister Murphy said: “What the LDA will not be is vehicle to give state land to developers. “This is about the state developing the land, it being the developer and capturing the value enhancements and delivering housing needs for its citizens; bringing forward public land for use for social housing, subsidised housing and general housing and I think it’s important we do that,” he said.