Cameron: Economy growing stronger
Britain's economy is finally rebalancing in the wake of the global financial crash, David Cameron has declared.
On the final day of his two-day visit to Brazil, the Prime Minister said there were "good signs" that growth was strengthening.
Following the success of the London Olympics, Mr Cameron said the "British brand" had never been stronger overseas. However he sounded a warning to Brazil's neighbour Argentina, insisting it must respect the outcome of next year's referendum by Falkland Islanders on their future.
During a round of television interviews, the Prime Minister struck a determinedly upbeat note about the UK's economic prospects, with exports to countries like Brazil picking up again.
"In the last two years we've seen a million net new jobs in the private sector. That shows our economy is rebalancing," he said.
"For too many years, the state was too big and the private sector was too small. We were too reliant on financial services; we weren't making enough, we weren't exporting enough, we weren't selling enough. That is changing. Businesses are starting up in Britain at a record rate. We need to get behind that and encourage that and that's what I do as Prime Minister."
Asked if he thought the economy had now turned the corner, Mr Cameron said: "I'm not a forecaster; it's not for me to say that. But I think what is happening is the rebalancing I'm talking about; that's happening. The private sector is growing the number of jobs, the number of people employed.
"Exports are increasing to countries like Brazil, up 24% over the last year. Last year a record number of businesses were created in Britain. There are good signs that the rebalancing we need - a stronger private sector, stronger growth - there are good signs that that's happening."
Mr Cameron said the London Olympics provided a showcase of what the country was capable of achieving. He said: "The British brand has never been stronger. We put on an incredible show in London in 2012, that was a fantastic advertisement for modern Britain and all that we can achieve."
The visit to Brazil - the economic powerhouse of South America - was intended to "bang the drum" for British business and Mr Cameron said it had succeeded in creating or safeguarding 3,000 jobs in the UK.