Commenting on the upgrade in UK economic growth announced in the Budget, Change Britain founding supporter Michael Gove said:
‘During the referendum campaign people were all too happy to warn of recession and economic ruin should we vote to leave the EU. Today’s figures demonstrate that they were wrong.
‘Our economy has not only been resilient since the referendum, it has flourished with record levels of employment, stronger economic growth and major inward investment announcements.
‘Outside the EU we can look forward to an even brighter future by becoming a global champion of free trade, creating new jobs across a range of industries and spreading prosperity right across the UK.’
Notes to Editors
The Chancellor’s Budget speech and the full Budget documents can be read here.
The Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) has raised its growth forecast for 2017 to 2.0%, up from 1.4% in November 2016 (OBR, November 2016, link) and close to the 2.2% forecast in March last year before the referendum (HM Treasury, March 2016, link).
The OBR is one of a number of organisations which have upgraded their growth forecasts for UK GDP.
In June 2016, days before the referendum, the IMF claimed that Brexit could lead to a recession in 2017, with GDP falling by 0.8% (IMF, June 2016, link). In January 2017, the IMF forecast UK growth for this year of 1.5% (Sky News, January 2017, link).
In August 2016, NIESR predicted there was a ‘50-50 chance’ of the UK falling into recession by the end of 2017 (City A.M., August 2016, link). Earlier this year, NIESR forecast UK growth in 2017 of 1.7% (Guardian, February 2017, link).
Before the referendum, the previous government warned ‘a vote to leave would represent an immediate and profound shock to our economy’ which would ‘push our economy into a recession’ (HM Treasury, May 2016, link).