Philip Hammond, the Chancellor, said the figures put the UK in a good position for the challenges ahead, as the UK prepares to leave the EU.
“Every major sector of the economy grew last year, which is further evidence of the fundamental strength and resilience of the UK economy,” he said.
“There may be uncertainty ahead as we adjust to a new relationship with Europe, but we are ready to seize the opportunities to create a competitive economy that works for all.”
Economists expect growth to slow further in 2017, with the average forecast anticipating GDP will expand by 1.4pc this year.
“We’d caution against complacency. Consumers won’t be ramping up spending thanks to rising inflation and sluggish wage growth, and businesses’ appetite to sign off big investments will depend on how they view the progress of Brexit negotiations,” said Lee Hopley, chief economist at the manufacturing industry body EEF.
“There’s every chance that this rate of expansion is the high point for the next couple of years.” THE TELEGRAPH