The value of total construction contracts in the UK reached £74bn in 2015, a year-on-year increase of 16%, thanks to an influx of mega projects being commissioned.

According to the latest Economic and Construction Market Review from Barbour ABI, the amount of projects commissioned in 2015 actually decreased from 2014 to fewer than 12,000. However, the total value was positively affected thanks to the increased number of mega projects. This resulted in the average construction project value increasing by 18% to £6.2m for the year.

Some of the large-scale commissioned projects in 2015 include the £1.3bn Rampion offshore wind farm, the £1bn Thames Tideway tunnel and a £330m extension of Walney offshore wind farm. Many of the large scale projects commissioned in 2015 were within the renewable energy sector, resulting in the infrastructure industry increasing its total contract value by 47% to £18.9bn.

Michael Dall, lead economist at Barbour ABI said: “Confidence seems to have returned for many of the larger companies within the industry, who must have felt that the time was right in 2015 to start commissioning mega projects that should provide a boost to the industry for years to come.

“However, the question remains as to whether the industry has the skilled labour to deliver on these contracts awarded in the timescales envisioned. Solving these supply side problems will be critical for the construction industry’s prospects in 2016 and beyond.”