The return to overall economic growth conceals an unbalanced recovery, says The Green Party.
Britain's economy has posted its fastest annual growth since 2007, expanding by 1.9% during 2013.The Office for National Statistics reported this morning (January 28) that GDP rose by 0.7% in the final three months of 2013. “These numbers are a boost for the economic security of hardworking people”, enthused Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne.
“While the overall growth figures indicate a return to growth this is far from the balanced recovery we were promised”, said Molly Scott Cato, Green Party finance spokesperson and leading MEP candidate. “The fact that 86% of the growth has come from the services sector hints that the increase in economic activity we are seeing is driven by the Chancellor's financial incentives and increases in personal debt and therefore may be doing no more than to re-inflate the bubble.
“These aggregate figures also tell us nothing about how the extra output is shared and other datas demonstrate that the apparent gains from growth are all being absorbed by the higher income groups, while the poor are struggling to keep their heads above water.”
Natalie Bennett, Green Party Leader, added:
"It's clear that this government has failed to reform our fraud-ridden, shaky financial sector, and has not, as it promised in 2010, made any progress on rebalancing our economy.
"He's made it even harder for small businesses to compete against multinationals by cutting the corporate tax rate, and presided over a collapse in business investment, particularly in the hugely promising 'green sector', which has suffered hugely from the government's inept vacillating on energy policy.
"Mr Cameron's promise from Davos in 2012 to lead the fight against aggressive tax avoidance is now clearly as hollow as campaigners feared at the time, and he's still paying many of these multinational tax dodgers huge sums in corporate welfare while 20% of British workers struggle along on less than the living wage."