The Impact Of COVID-19 On The Construction Industry

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way we live and work in South Africa. We have had to adapt to living and working in lockdown. We now practise social distancing in the workplace and in our homes. Many people are working from home. We have to wear masks in public. COVID-19 has impacted all of our lives. What has the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic been on the construction industry in South Africa? The construction industry is one of South Africa’s major economic contributors. Over one million people are employed in this industry. We take a look at how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted this industry. 

What should you know about COVID-19 and the construction sector?

  • South Africa’s construction sector struggled before the government instituted lockdown.
  • Our construction sector faces the possible loss of hundreds of thousands of jobs because of lockdown.
  • How has the construction sector responded to COVID-19? In response to COVID-19, the construction sector has created a Construction Sector COVID-19 Task Team. This Task Team is made up of contractors, built environment professional service firms, property developers, manufacturers, regulators, as well as professional associations. 
  • This Task Team has worked with the government to create an industry-specific COVID-19 Construction Health & Safety Protocol.
  • Construction has strict health and safety regulations. Contractors have resources that are in place to comply with legislation necessitating site-specific safety plans. Extra measures also include providing appropriate PPE and regularly monitoring the health and safety of the personnel.
  • The "South Africa Construction Industry Databook Series - Market Size & Forecast (2015 - 2024) by Value and Volume (area and units) across 40+ Market Segments, Opportunities in Top 10 Cities, and Risk Assessment - COVID-19 Update Q2 2020" report is a data-centric report. Over the next 8 quarters, growth is expected to stay impacted because of the economic downturn caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, across the following sectors in South Africa: residential, commercial, industrial and institutional sectors. South Africa’s construction industry is expected to record a CAGR of 13.2% to reach ZAR 286.2 billion by 2024.  

How can construction sites meet social distancing requirements for COVID-19?

  • Project managers have to think of innovative ways to reduce the number of people on sites in order to meet social distancing requirements. Project milestones still need to be met. Technology may play an important role in meeting social distancing requirements. For example, a lot of architects have begun using virtual reality headsets. These headsets have allowed clients to experience the site as though they are standing at the actual site themselves.

Did you know? At FHP, we meet with our clients to thoroughly understand their vision and to discuss their specific requirements and aspirations. We then appoint the necessary consultants and establish the project brief including project objectives, priorities, constraints, assumptions and strategies. Get in touch with us today to see how we can assist you with your construction project and learn more about our COVID-19 safety protocols. Phone our office on 011 466 0405 or email


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