2 Jun 2011

Contractors laying off staff

12:12 pm on 2 June 2011

The road-building and general contracting industry has been laying off staff in the past year due to a lack of work, though some in the industry are confident boom times lie ahead.

Roading New Zealand, whose members do 80% of all roading work, says contractors have been downsizing due to a lack of local authority roading work and residential development projects.

The Contractors Federation says seven of its 400 members have failed in the past six months.

The federation's members do work ranging from road building to civil infrastructure and residential developments.

Chief executive, Jeremy Sole, says other contractors have laid off staff because there's not enough work and those who do have work under way are not making a lot of profit.

He says many have been pushing prices low, some working at below cost, to make sure they have projects to work on.

However Mr Sole says the industry knows there's a huge amount of work coming in the next few years from deferred local council road building, rebuilding Christchurch and property development work picking up.