Economy on the Mend: Local MP, Greg Hands, Welcomes UK Growth rate passing 3%

Chelsea and Fulham MP, Greg Hands, has welcomed the UK’s improving economic performance as new figures show annual growth in the country exceeding 3%.

The figures, released by the Office of National Statistics, show that this is the fifth consecutive period of growth for the UK economy, something which has not been achieved since 2007, before Labour's Great Recession. Growth in the final quarter of last year was 0.7%, so not only is the economy growing, but at 0.8% this quarter the rate of growth is also increasing.

Greg Hands said: “These numbers are a boost for the economic security of hardworking people. This is great news for families my constituency and for those in work or trying to get in to work, as it will lead to further job creation. A growing economy means businesses are creating jobs, helping more people benefit from the security and stability of a regular pay cheque.”

Detailed analysis of the figures also reveals good news from the UK’s key sectors. Output increased in three of the four main industrial groupings within the economy in Q1 2014, compared with Q4 2013. Output increased by 0.9% in services, 0.8% in manufacturing and 0.3% in construction. Only output in agriculture decreased, by 0.7%, which is a normally expected feature of the winter months.

The services sector grew 2.7 per cent in the year to February 2014. The Index of Services increased by 2.7 per cent from February 2013 to 2014, up 0.2 per cent from January 2013. There was growth in all the four main components of the services industries, with the largest contribution made by business services and finance.

However whilst the economic figures have been welcomed by the Conservative-led Government, the Labour Party have sought to overlook the figures, and deny that the recovery is working. During Prime Ministers Questions on Wednesday, just one day after the figures were published, neither Ed Miliband nor any of his backbench MPs asked a question on the GDP numbers.

Greg Added: “The stronger the economy is under this Government, the less Labour want to talk about it. For the first time in a decade all three main sectors of the economy - manufacturing, services and construction - have grown by at least three per cent in the last year. These figures show that Britain is coming back - but we can’t take that for granted. We have to carry on working through our long term economic plan. Labour are seeking to do down the economy and ignore this good news, but they can hide from the fact that they created this economic mess that the Coalition are now fixing.”