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On a per capita basis, the nation has all the ingredients to be one of the world's most prosperous nations

George Osborne during a visit to AW Hainsworth and Sons textile manufacturer in October.

UK GDP: British economy growing at fastest rate since 2007

Official figures show UK economy grew 0.7% in the fourth quarter bringing the annual growth rate to 1.9%

Behind good news headlines on recovery and jobs we are no better off than at the start of this slump

Recession will have lasted three years longer than any other in the past 100 years

Former rate-setter Adam Posen warns of danger of Help to Buy property bubble

Bank needs to dampen impact of Chancellor’s scheme ,

Comment: Osborne glee- but questions remain

The IMF's upgrade for the UK economy will be greeted with glee in 11 Downing Street.

IMF raises UK growth forecast to 2.4%

Mark Carney free to keep rates low as IMF warns against withdrawing stimulus too soon

Credit clampdown puts the brakes on Chinese economy

China’s economy last year registered flat growth of 7.7 per cent, maintaining its slowest expansion in more than a decade

The IMF estimated in October the GPD growth would be 1.9 per cent for 2014, however it is expected to change that estimate to 2.4 per cent; These numbers would be seen by the Chancellor as a vindication

Relief for Osborne as IMF expects UK growth to hit highest rate in three years

The International Monetary Fund is expected to raise its estimate of growth in the UK economy tomorrow, in figures that will be seized upon by George Osborne, the Chancellor.

Carnage: A Kabul policeman surveys the damage

Foreigners targeted in Afghanistan blast as Labour MEP candidate Del Singh one of two Britons killed in Kabul attack which killed 21

Two Britons and four UN members were among the 21 people killed in the restaurant attack

Foreign Office confirms Briton among more than a dozen people killed in Afghanistan suicide bomb attack

A Briton was among more than a dozen people killed in a suicide attack on a restaurant in Kabul, the Foreign Office has confirmed.

Far-right party Golden Dawn is expected to perform well in municipal and European Parliament elections

Just what Greece didn’t need: BNP leader Nick Griffin seeks Golden Dawn alliance

Athens plays centre stage to a worrying political development

A woman pays for her shopping in euros at a supermarket in Rujiena, near the border with Estonia. On 1 January Latvia became the 18th country to adopt the Euro

Latvia: The country that fell for the euro

The single currency is supposedly doomed, weighed down by the parlous state of the Greek economy and infighting between member states. So why on Earth would a Baltic state with a strong economy want to board this stricken ship?

Warning of ‘serious flaws’ in economy as debt rises again

Think-tank says recovery based on borrowing risks being unsustainable

This Lebanese woman was among those injured in the explosion which claimed the life of Mohamad Chatah in Beirut

Mohamad Chatah - Lebanon's man of dialogue - is murdered in Beirut

Mohamad Chatah died in a car bomb that killed five others

Enda Kenny thanks Ireland as country exits its bailout programme

Ireland set to return to the money markets as the first euro zone nation to have completed a strict bailout programme

Head turning: Mary Barra, the world’s first woman to lead a major car company

At last, the face of power is female

First, General Motors, next, the Federal Reserve. The glass ceiling in the US is not broken, but some big cracks are beginning to appear

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
Prices correct as of 30 January 2015
Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee