By Daniel Hunter

The Government should be 'Churchillian on the economy' — and take immediate action on key infrastructure projects, the CBI director-general, John Cridland, said.

Mr Cridland told the Times he was frustrated with the lack of progress on schemes such as a planned upgrade to the A14, and that announcements must be backed up with action on the ground.

“We need to be Churchillian on the economy. In the war Churchill said ‘Action this day’, and that is what we need now,” he said.

The CBI chief also told the Mirror that it was crucial for politicians to make good on their pledges and press on with infrastructure projects.

“There is too much of a gap between procurement announcement and diggers on the ground, particularly when construction workers are laid off,” he said.

“We’ve been saying to Government, set out your stall for several years ahead. Tell us how many aircraft you’ll need, how many trains you’ll buy, how many new roads, classrooms you’ll need.

“Give us a sense of what’s coming.”

The CBI’s Economic Forecast, released yesterday, downgraded the growth forecast for the UK economy in 2012 from 0.6% to -0.3% - but predicted that growth would return in 2013.

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