LONDON, May 9 (Xinhua) -- Britain's gross domestic product (GDP) will exceed its previous peak in 2008 in the next few months, marking the end of the country's six-year Great Recession, said a British official think tank on Friday.
After growing only very marginally in 2012, the British economy saw accelerated growth and is now running at around 3 percent year-on-year, said National Institute of Economic and Social Research.
The think tank forecast Britain's gross domestic product (GDP) growth to be 2.9 percent this year, an upward revision of 0.4 percentage points on the forecast published just three months ago.
"We have also lifted our GDP growth forecasts for 2015 through to 2017 to about 2.4 percent," said the institute.
According to its quarterly economic forecast, the think tank forecast the unemployment rate for Britain to drop to 6.3 percent and 6.2 percent in 2014 and 2015 respectively.
Meanwhile, the inflation rate was expected to stay low, down to 2.0 percent and 1.6 percent in 2014 and 2015 respectively.
"The end of the Great Recession, it is an important moment," said Jonathan Portes, director of the institute. "The British economy is very close to being bigger than it has ever been."
Britain's GDP in the first quarter of 2014 grew by 0.8 percent, compared with growth of 0.7 percent in the fourth quarter last year, data showed by Office for National Statistics (ONS) last month.
In the first quarter, British GDP was estimated to be 0.6 percent below the peak in the first quarter of 2008, said ONS. From the peak in early 2008 to the lowest point in 2009, the British economy shrank by 7.2 percent.