Figures released by the Office of National Statistics confirm that the UK economy has come out of recession.
The economy grew 0.1 per cent in the final quarter of 2009. It had previously waned for six consecutive quarters, making it the longest recession since quarterly figures were first recorded in 1955.
Investec economist David Page has said there is “plenty of room for surprises” in the figures, which are estimated using only about 40 per cent of the available data.
Despite the good news, the treasury minister Lord Myners told BBC Radio Four that there were “some difficult decisions still to be made about balancing the economy”. He also said there is “a plan in place for growth moving forward, as growth will play an important part in reducing the deficit”.
And in a further boost, a poll conducted among senior buyers by international trade show World Travel Market shows confidence is returning to the travel and tourism industry.
According to the report, 84 per cent of senior buyers are optimistic for the industry’s prospects for 2010, with six out of ten surveyed saying it will perform better than 2009.
“It is great news for the industry that its most senior buyers expect it to bounce back this year,” says marketing manager Mark Jakobsen. “The global financial downturn has had a significant impact on travel and tourism. Consumer confidence is starting to recover and this is reflected in bookings so far in 2010.”