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Chambers calls for bold boost to the economy

The British Chambers of Commerce has called for “bold action” to boost economic growth after it revised down its growth forecast for this year from 0.6 per cent to 0.1 per cent.

The BCC blamed the 0.3 per cent fall in GDP in the first quarter and continued troubles in the eurozone for the downgrade. However, the network, which represents 100,000 businesses, increased its forecast for 2013 from 1.8 per cent to 1.9 per cent, adding it expects growth of 2.3 per cent in 2014.

The UK economy entered a technical recession last month after the Office for National Statistics reported two consecutive quarters of declining growth.

BCC director general John Longworth says the Government should look at creating a business bank to fund lending, a moratorium on new EU regulation and long-term strategies on aviation and energy.

He says: “Our new forecast underlines the need for bold action. Without the Government working together with business, the economy will continue to bump along the bottom.”

Highclere Financial Services partner Alan Lakey says: “The Government said it would slash red tape for businesses but that has not happened, so it could start there.”

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