Thursday, July 25, 2024

UK Growth Better Than Expected | BCC News – East Lancashire Chamber of Commerce

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Responding to the latest GDP figures published this morning by the ONS, David Bharier, Head of Research at the British Chambers of Commerce, said:

“The UK has had a strong start to the year and today’s data showing 0.9% growth in GDP in the three months to May is better than expected. Growth for May itself also ticked up at 0.4%, with the services sector performing well. This is further evidence that the economic shocks of the last five years are winding down as businesses get back onto a growth footing.

Our latest economic survey, published earlier this week, showed business confidence has improved. However, that positive sentiment is not yet translating into increased investment for most SMEs. The BCC’s most recent quarterly economic forecast expects GDP growth of 0.8% for the whole of 2024.

“It’s important that the new Government capitalises on this momentum, and it was encouraging to hear the Chancellor focus on boosting growth in her first speech on Monday. This is a major priority for businesses, especially after five years of economic shocks.

“We’ve been clear about where government should be focused to unlock investment. Our Future of the Economy report calls for an industrial strategy with green innovation at its heart, better skills planning, business rates reform, improving our trade relationship with the EU, and helping SMEs access the opportunities of AI.”

Miranda Barker OBE, CEO of East Lancashire Chamber of Commerce, commented:

“This chimes very much with what we have been seeing from our East Lancashire firms –  they have been reporting positive performance and strong order books, and forecast that the second half of 2024 will be more of the same.”

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