SEOUL, Sept. 21 (Xinhua) -- South Korea's construction contracts fell for the third consecutive quarter in the second quarter amid the continued housing market slump, government data showed Thursday.
Contracts for construction work came in at 54.7 trillion won (40.9 billion U.S. dollars) in the April-June quarter, down 33.8 percent from a year earlier, according to the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport.
The contract amount kept a downward trend since the fourth quarter of last year as the real estate market plunged into a downturn, caused by higher interest rates and growing worry about economic slowdown.
Public construction contracts, ordered by the central and local governments and public institutions, grew 8.1 percent over the year to 14.8 trillion won (11.1 billion dollars) in the second quarter.
Private construction contracts tumbled 42.1 percent to 40 trillion won (29.9 billion dollars).
By type, civil engineering contracts dwindled 10.4 percent to 15.6 trillion won (11.7 billion dollars) on weak demand for industrial facilities, while construction contracts dropped 40 percent to 39.2 trillion won (29.3 billion dollars) on soft demand for both residential and commercial properties.