By Marcus Leach

Chancellor George Osborne has said that the UK economy is turning a corner, citing 'tentative signs of a balanced, broad based and sustainable recovery'.

Speaking in London Mr Osborne said that the recovery was in its early stages still, and that risks remained. However, the underlying message of his speech was that 'Britain is turning a corner'.

He went on to say that recent months - which have seen more upbeat reports on the economy - had 'decisively ended' questions about his economic policy.

However, Labour have dismissed the comments, which were made ahead of the Conservative Party conference later this month.

Despite Labour's stance there is no denying that and after a number of forecasts and surveys pointed to an acceleration in the UK's economic recovery, Mr Osborne has reason for optimism at last.

Revised gross domestic product figures showed the UK economy grew by 0.7% in the second quarter of the year, with predictions it could reach 1% for the third quarter.

And last week the OECD economic agency sharply increased its growth forecast for the UK economy this year to 1.5% from an earlier estimate of 0.8%.

"The economic collapse was even worse than we thought. Repairing it will take even longer than we hoped," Mr Osborne said.

"But we held our nerve when many told us to abandon our plan. And as a result, thanks to the efforts and sacrifices of the British people, Britain is turning a corner.

"Of course, many risks remain. These are still the early stages of recovery. But we mustn't go back to square one. We mustn't lose what the British people have achieved.

"This is a hard, difficult road we have been following. But it is the only way to deliver a sustained, lasting improvement in the living standards of the British people."

John Cridland, director-general of business lobby group CBI, said the economy was gathering some momentum, business confidence was rising and he expected growth to continue into next year.

“The economy is gathering some momentum and with business confidence on the up, supported by greater interest rate certainty, we expect growth to continue into next year," he said.

“But to deliver a sustainable recovery we need stronger levels of business investment and trade to rebalance the economy, so we must get behind smaller firms who are ambitious to export.

“We have always said that deficit reduction should be at the top of the Government’s ‘to-do list’, but it must be coupled with an unrelenting focus on growth-boosting measures like infrastructure projects.”

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