Regional growth facts following national GDP increase

National Context

  • GDP grew by 0.8 per cent in the second quarter of 2014
  • This means that the UK economy is now 0.2 per cent above its pre-crisis peak in Q1 2008, after the recession shrank the economy by 7.2 per cent
  • Quarterly growth was driven mainly by the service sector (1.0 per cent) and manufacturing (which was weaker at 0.2 per cent). These two sectors combined make up 88 per cent of the UK economy
  • In comparison to the same quarter a year ago, each of the main sectors grew by more than 3%. This is the first time this has happened in 14 years (2000Q1)
  • Construction has increased 4.2% on a year ago compared to 3.3% for services
  • Manufacturing is up 3.3% on a year ago, same as services
  • Today’s figures back the IMF’s assessment yesterday that the UK will be the fastest growing major advanced economy in 2014. The IMF upgraded their 2014 growth forecast for the UK by more than any other major economy.

Chancellor George Osborne said:

“Thanks to the hard work of the British people, today we reach a major milestone in our long term economic plan.

“But there is still a long way to go – the Great Recession was one of the deepest of any major economy and cost Britain six years.

“Now we owe it to hardworking taxpayers not to repeat the mistakes of the past and instead to continue with the plan that is delivering economic security and a brighter future for all.”

STATE OF THE REGION AT A GLANCE

Employment

  • Nearly 150,000 more people are in work than in 2010
  • The youth claimant count has fallen by 15,500 over the last 12 months
  • Unemployment is down by 38,000 since 2010
  • Almost 5,700 have gained jobs through the Regional Growth Fund and Enterprise Zones
  • Cut tax for more than 2.08 million, including taking 266,000 out of paying any income tax.

Education/Training

  • More than 226,000 apprenticeships have been created since 2010 – the third highest in the country and 60,000 more than London
  • Nearly 400 academies have opened in the region since 2010
  • By May last year, there were 16,700 more primary places and 2,500 more secondary places in schools than in 2010
  • Higher education application rates are on a par with other regions at 32.9%

Business Economy & Transport

  • The value of orders in the region for construction/infrastructure in the first quarter of 2014 totalled £259 million
  • Government has invested £560 million in the Northern Hub, which is due to be completed by 2019
  • £270 million has been given to support businesses through the Regional Growth Fund, supporting 64,000 jobs
  • £290 million committed to electrify the TransPennine railway, with work starting last year
  • Govt is contributing £175.5 million to the Leeds Trolleybus scheme and £15.8m toward the South Yorkshire rapid bus scheme.

Sandy Needham, chief executive of West & North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce, said:

“Our latest Quarterly Economic Survey, released on July 8, highlighted growing confidence, which in parts of our region is at historically high levels. Companies reported increases in sales, both home and abroad, increasing investment intentions and more recruitment activity in the last three months which is all welcome news.

“However, there is still slack in the system with many companies yet to reach maximum output; companies also reported increasing concerns over inflation fears and skills shortages. Despite this we are in a much better place than we were only twelve months ago.”

 

Written on 25th July 2014Lillie Geistdorfer. Published in Economy, News