Recession ‘difficult to predict’

Business Materials 30 November 2008 11:51 (UTC +04:00)

British Business Secretary Peter Mandelson has said it is impossible to predict how deep or painful the recession will be, BBC reported.

The government predicts a recovery by 2010 but Mandelson told the Guardian that the recession's severity may be under estimated.

In his pre-budget report, the chancellor forecast that a big rise in government spending would help to minimize the downturn.

Alastair Darling expects economic growth of between 1.5 percent and 2 percent in 2010.

In his Commons statement earlier this week, the chancellor slashed economic growth forecasts for next year from 2.75 percent to between minus 0.75 percent and minus 1.25 percent - the biggest downward revision on record.

He hopes that a raft of measures worth 20 billion pounds will save the UK from a downturn similar to that seen in the early 1980s and 1990s.

But Lord Mandelson has conceded that it was difficult to tell whether the economy will grow by the rates forecast.

"No one can foretell how short or long, how painful or painless, the recession is going to be," he told the Guardian newspaper.

"All I know is that the deeper we get into the recession, the higher the costs of climbing out will be."