A BARROWFORD business leader has welcomed an announcement that the UK economy is finally considered to be back in the black.

The Office for National Statistics has said the economy expanded by 0.7 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2013 – which at an annual growth rate of 1.9 per cent is said to be the fastest since 2007.

And Ian Clark, finance director at Barrowford lighting company acdc, named as an export champion by UK Trade and Investment, is bullish about future prospects.

He said: “It does look like the economy has turned a corner.

“It’s early days but people are talking more positively, projects are coming back on-line and banks are starting to recognise the role they have to play in getting UK businesses growing again.

“acdc is certainly seeing an upturn in UK-based projects and we are as busy as ever with international work”.

Frank McKenna, chief executive of business networking group Downtown in Business, added: “There is no doubt that the economy is growing again, and confidence is returning to the private sector.

“Entrepreneurs and business owners are looking to invest in their companies again, and this is reflected in the latest unemployment figures.”