Triple dip recession becoming increasingly likely
The UK economy contracted further than was initially thought in the last quarter of 2012 - and commentators have expressed concern that this could mean that the UK is closer to a triple dip recession than expected.
General secretary of Unison Dave Prentis claimed that this revelation means that even the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) - which was established by the current coalition government - has confirmed the Conservative agenda of austerity and cuts is holding back economic growth.
Indeed, it is not the only statistical organisation to confirm that the country's economic performance appears to be flagging still further.
The latest monthly estimates of gross domestic product (GDP) from the National Institute of Economic and Social Research indicated that the economy continued to flatline in February.
GDP output fell by 0.1 per cent in the three-month period ending February 2013 - and this follows on from a contraction of 0.2 per cent in the three months ending January.
Mr Prentis argued that the OBR figures emphasise just how important it is that prime minister David Cameron sacrifices his austerity programme and puts the interests of the country first.
He suggested that by initiating a programme of public spending, the economy will be able to return to growth - and a triple dip recession that has its potential origin in government policies could be avoided.
The expert called on chancellor of the exchequer George Osborne to take steps to avert the potential crisis in his forthcoming Budget announcement.
"Next week's Budget should be used to outline a bold strategy for jobs and growth," Mr Prentis advised, adding: "We know that public service jobs have been cut too far too fast - lift the threat of unemployment and people will start buying again - boosting manufacturing.
"Give public sector workers a decent pay rise and more money will flow through to local shops and businesses, helping our beleaguered high streets."