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Northern Ireland GDP figures trump rest of UK

Britain's economy expanded at a faster pace than first thought, with growth of 0.3% in the first quarter of the year.

The Office for National Statistics yesterday revised up its estimate for growth of gross domestic product (GDP) in the first quarter from an initial lacklustre 0.2%.

Strength in the manufacturing sector helped the recovery, with industrial production growth upgraded to 1.2% from the 0.7% reported last month.

"Northern Bank estimates that growth in the local economy was approximately 0.4% in quarter one this year," said Angela McGowan, chief economist at Northern Bank,

"The local estimate is higher than the UK equivalent but is not expected to remain higher in the months ahead.

"The UK economy holds much more potential than Northern Ireland to tap into the world recovery, through its larger export base. Being able to sell goods and services in international markets is the key to economic growth and recovery."