Reopening of hospitality industries drives 4.8 per cent rise in UK GDP

UK economy continues to bounce back from Covid: Britain has fastest growth rate in G7 as reopening of hospitality industries drives 4.8 per cent rise in GDP

The great British pub helped boost the UK economy out of lockdown, spearheading a 4.8 per cent increase in GDP in the second quarter of 2021, new figures revealed today. 

The country’s gross domestic product (GDP) increased by a further 1 per cent in June, creating five consecutive months of growth, following a 0.6 per cent rise in May, the Office for National Statistics said.

Chancellor Rishi  Sunak hailed the figures, saying they were the best of any G7 nation.

Lockdown restrictions slowly eased through much of the quarter, with outdoor dining opened again in April and further restrictions were lifted in May.

However, GDP is still around two percentage points below its pre-pandemic peak.

Mr Sunak said: ‘Today’s figures show that our economy is on the mend showing strong signs of recovery, thanks to our Plan for Jobs and successful vaccine programme.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak hailed the figures, saying they were the best of any G7 nation.

‘I know there are still challenges to overcome, but I feel confident in the strength of the UK economy and the resilience of the British people.

‘With the fastest quarterly growth rate among the G7 economies we have exceeded expectations, and I’m pleased to see the UK bouncing back.’

However the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) inserted a not eof caution into the economic picture, saying business investment remained low.

Suren Thiru, its head of economics, said: ‘Strong growth in the second quarter may be the high point for the UK economy with economic activity likely to moderate in the third quarter as staff shortages, supply chain disruption and consumer caution to spend limits any gains from the lifting of restrictions in July.

‘Against this backdrop, policymakers must guard against complacency over the underlying strength of the recovery. 

‘A comprehensive rebuild strategy to turbocharge growth post-Covid is needed, alongside a clear plan for dealing with any future virus response, to give firms the confidence to start firing on all cylinders again.’

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