The Government today revealed that the UK’s GDP grew by 0.1% in the three months to April.

Responding to the news, Ruth Ross, chief executive of Shropshire Chamber of Commerce, said: “Clearly it’s good news that our GDP is heading in the right direction again, albeit very slowly.

“But the growth is by no means across-the-board, and when it’s put into context with rising inflation and interest rates, overall it seems that our economy is merely stagnating at best.

“We are currently in the process of analysing the results of our latest quarterly economic survey of Shropshire businesses, and it shows that there are still significant concerns around recruitment, and the impact of our stubbornly high rate of inflation on overheads.

“It looks highly likely that the Bank of England is going to have to raise interest rates further over the coming months to try to reverse this trend, and that is going to impact on the purchasing and spending power of many businesses.”

Ruth said it was clear that the construction and production sectors were lagging some way behind other industries, while many small and medium sized businesses in Shropshire are holding back on investment plans.

"The British Chambers of Commerce is also forecasting a 4.7% decline in exports this year, so there is clearly still a great deal of work to be done,” she added.

  • Read more reaction from the British Chambers of Commerce here