2019 will continue the downward trend in construction starts. Although in the first three quarters of the year construction starts were 4% higher than those recorded in the corresponding three quarters in 2018, the data is very far from the 2016 peak data, according to the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) data released. Following much criticism of major updates on construction startup publications, the CBS changed its flow rate, and as of January 2019, they are based on the Bureau's Field Survey only, as opposed to previous years, so comparing 2019 data to its predecessors is a matter for future consideration.
In the first three quarters of the year, approximately 37,000 construction starts were registered, and if the rate continues to do so in the current quarter, construction starts have dropped from 50,000 a year, for the first time in several years. Although in the year between October 2018 and September this year, 52,360 housing units began to be built, but this is due to the exceptional fourth quarter of 2018, in which more than 15,000 housing units were started; This is while the beginning of the year, construction starts are moving around 12,000 per quarter.
A significant portion of the construction starts are attributed to the cost of the dwelling, and so can be seen at the top of the construction starts places identified with the government plan, such as Be'er Sheva, Harish, Or Yehuda, Yavne, Netivot, Rishon LeZion and Tirat Carmel. On the other hand, many construction starts are particularly prominent in Tel Aviv, as a result of large urban renewal projects. The high figures from Tel Aviv also jumped the Tel Aviv district to become the district with the biggest construction starts. Between the year of October 2017 and September 2018 and the one between October 2018 and September 2019, construction starts in the Tel Aviv District jumped more than 50%, and bypassed the Central District, which is traditionally the district leading construction in Israel. Construction in this year was recorded in Tel Aviv, compared with 21.6% recorded in Central District.
The third district in terms of construction starts was the Southern District, with 17.5% of all construction starts in Israel. This is a surprising statistic, which is a definite product of the price per user. Places like Be'er Sheva, Netivot, Sderot, Kiryat Gat are included in the top of the construction starts, and all projects are included in the national housing plan.
In Haifa District, 13.4% of construction starts were recorded in Israel, thanks to many construction starts registered in Harish and Or Akiva (where construction starts are not attributed to the cost to the resident, but to reduced construction in the large sea lights neighborhood). The Northern District's share reached 13.2%, thanks to many beginnings recorded in Acre and Nahariya - also within the framework of the cost of housing, while in the Judea and Samaria District 3.1% of all construction starts were started.
Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon rejected recently criticism of the rise in housing prices. During a tour of the city of Lod at a price-per-occupant project, Kahlon attacked his critics and said, "There is an army that spends days and nights to slander us so that you will not have an apartment. Do not give in to high prices, there is no reason in the world to be extorted by bodies that want to exploit the housing shortage, we are on the way to a solution, said the Minister of Finance.