Koninklijke VolkerWessels N.V. reports an all-time high order book in its Half Year 2018 report, which is a reflection of the positive trends in the markets in which the multi-branded construction company operates. The company sees a satisfactory underlying operational performance. VolkerWessels hasdecided to report the OpenIJ project separately going forward. This is showing its focus on the project and allows its shareholders to better evaluate the performance of the company and its segments.
The markets in which we are active are very strong. Demand for our products and services remains high. As a result of this continued increased demand, our order book has reached an all-time high at € 8,767 million (up 4.1% versus 30 June 2017). The order book of C&RED increased by over € 500 million, including new significant long-term residential development positions in the cities of Amsterdam, Delft and Utrecht securing long term production volume. The decision by the Dutch government to stop gas connectivity for new build homes after the 1st of July 2018 may temporarily impact the growth of the construction of new homes in the Netherlands. With our MorgenWonen® product, we are very well positioned for this new development.
The EBITDA, excluding the provision for OpenIJ, for H1 2018 of € 93 million is well above the range of € 85 - € 91 million that we expected in the press release of 3 July. Our working capital improved and our net cash position improved by € 116 million. As we reduced our strategic working capital close to € 100 million, I am proud to announce that we have decided to change our medium-term objective to improve strategic working capital from € 100 million to € 200 million.