LONDON, May 23 (Xinhua) -- British economy grew by 0.3 percent in the first quarter of 2013 according to the latest estimate released by the British Office for National Statistics (ONS) on Thursday.
The ONS said Britain's GDP in volume terms increased by 0.3 percent compared with the fourth quarter of 2012, unchanged from the previous estimate in April. Year on year, Britain's economic output grew 0.6 percent in the first three months of 2013.
This means the British economy has managed to avoid a triple dip recession.
The Bank of England had earlier upgraded its GDP growth expectations in the current quarter to 0.5 percent. This is the first time that the central bank has raised its forecast for the British economy since the 2008 financial crisis.
However, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said on Wednesday that British economy was still a long way from a "sustainable recovery."
In a statement published on the conclusion of its latest mission to Britain, the IMF said "the key risk is that persistent slow growth could permanently damage medium-term growth prospects."
The British recovery since the end of the 2008-09 recession has been slow. The country's annual economic output is still about 5 percent below its pre-crisis peak.
British GDP figures produced on a rolling monthly basis for each quarter with three estimates. Revisions to the GDP figures are made based on new information.