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PM appeals for global investment
David Cameron will appeal for international investment in Britain as he tries to haul the economy out of a protracted double-dip recession.
The day after shock figures revealed a worse-than-expected third consecutive quarter of decline, the Prime Minister will tell the first of a series of trade summits to be held during the Olympics: "Britain is back open for business."
The coalition Government came under fresh pressure to change course on the economy after the 0.7% contraction in GDP between April and June, much more severe than the 0.2% fall forecasters expected.
The UK is now mired in the longest double-dip recession since quarterly records began in 1955 and possibly since the Second World War.
In a speech to a global investment conference at Lancaster House, Mr Cameron will say: "My message today is very simple: Britain is back open for business, and we are committed to supporting global growth with open trade between our nations.
"So invest in Britain, partner with Britain, not just to invest in this country, but because this is the place, the hub, from which your company can grow and expand. So make this Olympic year a great year for your business, here in Great Britain."
Official figures show that the number of inward investment projects in the UK has fallen for the third year in succession.
Ministers said the numbers were "very positive" because they showed foreign direct investment created or secured more than 112,000 jobs in the UK in 2011/12 - 19% up on the previous year.
This will be the first of 18 business summits being held during the Olympic period to capitalise on the presence in London of thousands of world leaders, policymakers and investors. The Government hopes more than £1 billion worth of deals and projects can be generated over the summer on the back of the Games, with a further £13 billion worth over the two or three years to come.
The Prime Minister will say: "At a time when it is global business partnerships, new investments and start-up ventures that will help get the world back to growth, nothing symbolises the opportunity of partnership and collaboration more than the Olympics. So yes, I want medals for Britain, and there will be no more passionate supporter of Team GB than me. But I've got a job to do this summer, and a big part of that job is to get behind British business, and do everything I can to help secure the trade and investment that will help get the world back to sustained, global growth."