October 2011

UK population will be largest in EU by 2043

Britain will become the most populous country in the European Union within a generation, thanks to the fastest population growth since the baby boom.

By 2043, the population will have swollen to more than 74 million, outstripping France and Germany.

Two thirds of the expansion will be due to immigration, according to the Office for National Statistics.

The landmark figure of 70 million could be reached in 16 years after officials yesterday revised upward population projections.

Over the next decade, the population will increase by the equivalent of a city the size of Leeds every year. Officials estimate the population will swell by 0.8 per cent – or 491,000 – every year to 2020, the fastest sustained growth since the 1960s.

The ONS now predicts the UK will have 70 million people by 2027, compared with 2029 at the last estimate. The population is currently around 62 million.

Crucially, if the trend continues, it will overtake Germany for the first time as the largest EU country by 2043.

It would mean the UK will be the biggest country in Europe outside Russia.

Portobello Road - Always Packed!

Portobello Road - Always Packed!

London business chiefs set up panel to examine Crossrail 2 – connecting Chelsea to Hackney

London business chiefs have set up a panel to explore building a new rail link – dubbed Crossrail 2 – beneath the capital.

Former transport secretary Lord Adonis will lead the group in assessing plans to connect Chelsea and Hackney.

Business group London First recruited him, amid fears that the Tube will be swamped by a future population boom, and by the extra commuters who will pour into the capital using high-speed rail.

Mayor Boris Johnson’s transport strategy promotes a new east-west underground line but firms want to ensure it does not suffer the kind of delays which have dogged the existing Crossrail scheme.

London First chief executive Baroness Valentine said: “We need to start planning for the next generation of improvements now.”

The proposed route would go from Parsons Green to Leytonstone via Chelsea, Sloane Square, Victoria, Piccadilly Circus, Tottenham Court Road, King’s Cross St. Pancras, Angel, Essex Road, Dalston Junction, Hackney Central and Homerton.

Dalston Junction - possible stop on Crossrail 2

Dalston Junction - possible stop on Crossrail 2

UK interest rates kept at 0.5%

£75bn more quantitative easing announced by Sir Mervyn King to boost demand in economy. The Bank’s governor said the UK was suffering from a 1930s-style shortage of money and needed a second dose of quantitative easing to boost demand and prevent inflation falling too low.

THE FTSE 100 continued to make progress yesterday, as fresh economic stimulus measures from the Bank of England sent the benchmark index higher.