Government must be more ambitious to achieve spectacular, not just solid growth

Reaction to GDP figures

Commenting on the latest GDP figures, Prof Philip Booth, Editorial Director at the Institute of Economic Affairs, said:

“Strong economic growth of 0.8% is good news for the UK. But it has taken far too long to get to this stage. Next quarter we should finally see GDP return to pre-crash levels. If the government had cut spending and not raised taxes in 2010, the recovery from the crash would have been much more rapid.

“UK growth has been hamstrung by post-crash tax increases, heavy regulation and high levels of government spending. The latter has finally been reduced as a proportion of national income and the economy has turned a corner. However, spending remains far too high at around 45% of national income. This must be addressed so taxes can be cut. Planning, employment and energy market regulation should also be drastically scaled back to raise productivity, growth and living standards.

 “Longer-term structural reforms such as these will boost enterprise and encourage working, saving and investing to ensure that good growth becomes the new normal.”