New figures released by GlobalData show that the construction project pipeline in North America is healthier than that of any other region, while in sub-Saharan Africa the industry is struggling to meet deadlines.

North America has a score of 0.82 in GlobalData’s March 2022 Construction Project Momentum Index, which provides an assessment of the health of the construction project pipeline at all stages of development from announcement through to completion.

Every construction project in GlobalData's database is assigned a score of between 5 and -5 based on its current progress, a score that is continually updated over time. These are then weighted by the value of each project in order to come to overall scores for countries, regions and sectors.

Within North America, the infrastructure sector has performed particularly well with a score of 1.31, ranking first out of all 11 regions.

By contrast, the region's residential sector has performed less well, ranking sixth with a score of 0.59.

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Of the countries in North America, the construction sector is healthiest in the US, which has a score of 0.86 in GlobalData's Construction Project Momentum Index, whereas Canada (0.69) lags behind.

Which regions are struggling?

While the construction sector in North America may be thriving, in sub-Saharan Africa the situation is less positive.

Sub-Saharan Africa has a score of just -0.34 in GlobalData's Construction Project Momentum Index, indicating frequent project delays and cancellations.

The situation is particularly severe in Ethiopia, which scores just -0.78 in the index. South Africa (-0.71) also scores poorly. The situation is somewhat better in Nigeria, the best-performing country in sub-Saharan Africa with a score of -0.39.

Looking at construction projects by industry, sub-Saharan Africa's difficulties are greatest in the infrastructure sector, which scores just -0.81 in the index. That puts sub-Saharan Africa in 11th place out of 11 regions in terms of the health of its infrastructure sector construction projects. The region's commercial and leisure sector performs somewhat better with a score of 0.37.

How are different sectors performing worldwide?

GlobalData's analysis examined construction projects in six sectors around the world: energy and utilities, commercial and leisure, industrial, institutional, residential and infrastructure.

For construction projects in the energy and utilities sector, western Europe is seeing the healthiest performance with a score of 0.73 on GlobalData's Construction Project Momentum Index. By contrast, sub-Saharan Africa has the worst score for projects in this sector – just -0.28.

Looking at projects in the industrial sector, western Europe is the best-performing region with a score of 0.94, whereas eastern Europe is the worst-performing region with a score of zero.

Investors looking to avoid delays and cancellations while constructing residential buildings should be looking to western Europe, which comes out top of the Construction Project Momentum Index in this sector with a score of 0.71, while steering clear of sub-Saharan Africa (zero).

Infrastructure projects, meanwhile, have been running most smoothly in North America (1.31), while meeting the greatest friction in sub-Saharan Africa (-0.81).

In the commercial and leisure business, construction projects are currently seeing fewest delays in North America (0.63) and the most delays in Latin America (0.01).

GlobalData also examined the progression of construction projects in the institutional sector, finding that they were proceeding most successfully in North-East Asia (0.97) and least successfully in sub-Saharan Africa (-0.58).

The Construction Project Momentum Index

GlobalData's Construction Project Momentum Index is based on analysis of thousands of individual construction projects around the world.

Each project is continually monitored for updates, with updates indicating progress increasing the project's score while updates indicating delays or cancellations reduce the score. The score always sits between 5, the best possible score, and -5, the worst.

The scores for individual projects are then weighted based on their significance in order to create combined indices for each region or sector.

Events that can reduce a project's score include the project being cancelled or put on hold, delays, the rejection of applications or tender bids, or the reduction of the project's scope.

Events that can increase a project's score on the index, by contrast, include the completion or commencement of construction, the awarding of major contracts, or the approval of applications.

To view the regional breakdowns of GlobalData's Construction Project Momentum Index, visit: