Cyprus’s construction sector saw a 16.5 per cent increase in the total value of building permits during the first half of 2023, as well as a 3 per cent increase in their total area, according to a report released this week by the Cyprus Statistical Service (Cystat).
The increase in the value and total area of building permits comes despite a 7.4 per cent year-on-year decrease in their overall number.
The rise in the number of residential units is attributed solely to the increase in residential multi-unit buildings.
During the period of January to June 2023, municipal authorities and provincial administrations issued 3,608 building permits, down from 3,898 in the corresponding period of 2022, marking a 7.4 per cent decrease.
However, the total value of these permits increased by 16.5 per cent, and the total area increased by 3.0 per cent.
The number of residential units increased by 2.6 per cent, primarily due to a 17.6 per cent increase in residential multi-unit buildings compared to the same period in the previous year.
On the contrary, single-unit residences decreased by 9.4 per cent, duplexes by 20.9 per cent, and mixed-use multi-unit buildings by 45.2 per cent.
Specifically, in the first half of 2023, the number of permits issued for residential buildings decreased by 8.2 per cent compared to the first half of 2022.
In addition, permits for non-residential buildings decreased by 9 per cent, and permits for civil engineering projects decreased by 21.1 per cent.
Meanwhile, land divisions increased by 3.7 per cent, and road construction increased by 30.1 per cent.
Meanwhile, in June alone, according to the Cyprus Statistical Service, the number of building permits issued by municipal authorities and provincial administrations reached 610, compared to 626 in June of the previous year.
The total value of these permits amounted to €251.1 million, compared to €220.05 million in June of the previous year, with a total area of 200,500 square meters, down from 202,070 square meters.
These permits are expected to result in the construction of 1,141 residential units, while in June 2022, 1,146 units were projected.
Excluding Larnaca, the number of building permits decreased in all other districts during the first half of the year compared to the same period in 2022.
Specifically, in Nicosia, the number of building permits decreased to 1,312 from 1,424, in Limassol to 1,060 from 1,141, in Paphos to 481 from 563, and in Famagusta to 143 from 210 during the same period last year.
In contrast, in the Larnaca district, the number of building permits increased to 612 from 560 in the first half of 2022.
Finally, statistical service noted that building permits serve as a significant indicator for future activity in the construction sector.