(AFP) – Britain’s economy grew by 0.6 percent in the final three months of last year and by 2.0 percent over 2016, official data showed Thursday as the country prepares for Brexit.
“UK gross domestic product (GDP) was estimated to have increased by 0.6 percent during quarter four 2016, the same rate of growth as in the previous two quarters,” the Office for National Statistics said in a statement.
The annual growth figure of 2.0 percent was however a slowdown the rate of 2.2 percent in 2015 and 3.1 percent the year before, the ONS added.
Britain’s economy has performed better than expected since the country voted in June in favour of exiting the European Union, though analysts expect a more difficult 2017 as the government navigates a formal departure.
Thursday’s data “provides yet more evidence that the UK economy is running along nicely”, said David Cheetham, market analyst at XTB trading group, before adding a note of caution.
“The process of beginning formal discussions on the terms of life outside the EU is seemingly drawing closer and this poses a major threat to the UK economy,” he added.