Economy on the mend as GDP grows 0.6 per cent

The UK economy grew by 0.6 per cent in the second quarter of 2013, according to preliminary data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), prompting Chancellor George Osborne to say the economy is 'on the mend'.

The upward trend follows GDP growth of 0.3 per cent in the first quarter of the year.

All four main industrial groups (agriculture, production, construction and services) grew in the three months to June compared with the previous three months.

The largest contribution came from the services sector, which accounted for 0.48 per cent of the 0.6 per cent GDP increase. There was also significant contribution from production, with manufacturing seeing a 0.4 per cent growth following a contraction of 0.2 per cent in the previous quarter.

Commenting on the figures, Chancellor George Osborne said: "The numbers today are better than forecast. Britain is holding its nerve; we're sticking with our economic plan, the economy is on the mend, but we've still got a long way to go as move from rescue to recovery."

"I know for families, times are still tough and things are difficult, but we are determined to carry on building an economy that works for everyone."

John Longworth, director general of the British Chambers of Commerce said: "Confidence among businesses is high when looking ahead to profitability and turnover, and many have intentions to take on staff later this year."

He added: "More and more are adopting a ‘have a go' attitude when it comes to exporting, which is really encouraging as this will go a long way to driving growth further still."