Week commencing 25 January 2016

In today's bulletin


• Property accounts for 60 percent of worldwide assets
• Construction industry set to create 232,000 jobs in five years

• ICE wants evidence to drive UK’s future infrastructure vision
• UK faces electricity supply gap of 55 per cent by 2025

Property, Planning and Regeneration

Property accounts for 60 percent of worldwide assets

Analysis by Savills, published for the first time, has revealed the total value of all developed real estate reached $217 trillion in 2015. The analysis demonstrates that global property amounts to 2.7 times the world GDP,
making up roughly 60 per cent of mainstream global assets. The greatest component is privately owned homes (accounting for $162 trillion).

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Construction lag set to push up house prices

Nationwide has predicted that house prices will rise in the coming months as a result of a lag in construction activities. The building society has also warned that a strong labour market will strengthen demand on houses,
with wages going up at a healthy rate and the prospect of interest rates remaining at 0.5 per cent.

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Construction industry set to create 232,000 jobs in five years

More apprenticeships are required to address the skills shortage in the construction industry, according to the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB). The CITB predicts, in its Construction Skills Network report, sustained ,
growth from 2016-2020 amounting to 232,000 jobs are set to be created over the next five years. The growth is primarily driven by infrastructure projects and private housing.

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London’s public land could provide 130,000 homes

The first ever comprehensive register of public land in London has revealed 40,000 sites across the capital, capable of delivering a minimum of 130,000 homes, according to the London Land Commission. The commission, chaired by Mayor of London Boris Johnson and Housing and
Planning Minister Brandon Lewis, appointed Savills to compile the list in 2015, with the aim of unlocking and accelerating the release of surplus land for housing. It is available to view on City Hall’s website.

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Public sector land to provide new homes

In further public land news, the Government has announced that it will bring additional public land sites to the market over the next 18 months as it looks to deliver more new homes. 40 sites will be put forward to add to around 80
already being used by the Homes and Communities Agency. The Government hopes to use this surplus land to build more than 5,000 properties, a move which they say will boost local economies and benefit the taxpayer.

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Commercial property prices still rising as demand stays high

The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors’ last commercial property survey of 2015 has shown that high demand is causing prices to continue to rise. The RICS report cites the lack of quality in the market as a factor in the
increase in demand and predicts a further rise in rents across all sectors over the next year. Supply again decreased through the fourth quarter of the year, an eleventh consecutive quarterly fall.

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Comm New home registrations up seven per cent

The number of new homes registered in 2015 was at an eight-year high, rising to more than 156,000. The figures, revealed last week by the National House Building Council, registrations were 7 per cent higher than last year
and 75 per cent more than 2009, the year of the housing crash. Greater London again had the highest number of registrations, despite falling 9 per cent on 2014 figures.

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£40 million awarded to four UK cities to encourage use of electric cars

Bristol, Milton Keynes, Nottingham and London will all receive multi-million pound funding to promote the use of green vehicle technology. As winners of the Go Ultra Low City Scheme, the four cities will deliver a range of new
green technology. Potential projects to increase the use of electric powered vehicles include rapid charging hubs and street lighting that double as charging points in a bid.

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ICE wants evidence to drive UK’s future infrastructure vision

The coalition carrying out the ‘National Needs Assessment’ which is chaired by the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) President and National Infrastructure Commissioner Sir John Armitt, has launched a nationwide consultation.
The consultation aims to gather evidence to add to a report set to be published in October 2016, which will set out a vision for UK infrastructure up to 2050.

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Traffic lights are a waste of time and money

According to a new report published by the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA), 80 per cent of the UK’s traffic lights should be removed to boost the economy and improve road safety. The report demonstrates the negative
social and economic effects of the government’s traffic management scheme, and estimate that just a two minute delay to every car journey equates to an approximate loss of £16 billion a year.

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Energy and environment

UK faces electricity supply gap of 55 per cent by 2025

According to a report released on 26 January by the Institute of Mechanical Engineers, the UK will face an electricity supply gap of up to 55 per cent by 2025. It suggests that the closure of the country’s coal-fired power stations
and ageing nuclear plants will cause this shortfall, with government plans to plug the gap unlikely to be sufficient. The report also pointed to a heightened dependence on European interconnectors which would increase costs and risk security of supply.

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Other News

Think tank reports increase in new city jobs against drop in average salary

An economic report, Cities Outlook 2016, published by think tank Centre for Cities on Monday 25 January reveals that more than 980,000 new jobs were created in UK cities between 2010-14. But wages are down, with the report
showing that the average urban wage fell by five per cent, or £1,300 a year per city dweller, during the same period.

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New laws herald devolution revolution

The Cities and Local Government Devolution Act received Royal Assent on Thursday 28 January, paving the way for the Government to hand power to local leaders. Devolution deals have already been agreed with seven regions
from across the UK, and talks are currently underway with other local areas about what powers might be devolved to them.

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