Construction group Balfour Beatty says it’s order book is more than 20 per cent higher than it was a year ago, despite having to close around one in six sites due to coronavirus social distancing rules.
The company says a contract to work on significant parts of the HS2 project has boosted orders to £17.4 billion, compared with £14.3 billion at this point in 2019.
A ten year contract with Highways England to deliver smart motorways has also helped.
A statement reads, “In the current uncertainty, the approval of HS2 provides critical visibility and impetus not only for Balfour Beatty but also for the UK construction industry and its supply chain partners. In combination with increased funding for road and other rail programmes, the UK government’s decision on HS2 demonstrates its commitment to stimulate economic recovery.”
Regarding the coronavirus challenge, Balfour Beatty says the most affected areas in the UK have been Scotland, where the devolved Government administration required the closure of all non-essential construction works, and London where public transport availability has been a significant challenge.
“These remain challenging and uncertain times,” said Leo Quinn, Group Chief Executive. “Our priority will always be the safety and health of all our employees, customers, partners and the public…
“As we navigate the Group through this exceptional year, we will maintain our focus on the longer term to ensure we are ready to capitalise fully on the significant opportunities in our chosen markets.”