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British economy to expand 2% in 2011, moderate recovery underway: IMF
Date: 2010/9/29 Click: 1808
A moderate economic recovery in Britain is underway, and the real gross domestic product (GDP) growth would expand 2 percent in 2011, lower from a previous estimate of 2.1 percent, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said on Monday.

The British economy is "on the mend. Unemployment has stabilized, and financial sector health has improved. The government's strong multi-year fiscal deficit reduction plan is essential to ensure debt sustainability. The plan greatly reduces the risk of a costly loss of confidence in public finances and supports a balanced recovery," the IMF said in a Monday report.

The Washington-based agency contented that the fiscal tightening in Britain would dampen short-term growth but not stop it as other sectors of the economy would emerge as drivers of recovery, supported by continued monetary stimulus.

"The British authorities should continue to provide leadership and build support for ambitious global reform of financial regulation. Ensuring a smooth transition to a new supervisory architecture at home will also be important to secure a safer post- crisis environment," according to the IMF's annual report on the British economy.

The IMF predicted that the British GDP would rise gradually to 2.5 percent in the medium term.

"On the upside, expansionary impulses from very low real interest rates, past sterling depreciation, and the ongoing recovery of global demand could be greater than expected, boosting the U.K. economy onto a faster-than-expected growth path," said the IMF.

Given the continued fragility of confidence, still-strained balance sheets among households and banks, signs of renewed housing market weakness, and the possibility that headwinds from fiscal consolidation could turn out to be more powerful than expected, according to the report known as an Article IV consultation.
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