[holding answer 6 May 2008]: According to the ONS, seasonally adjusted production sector output fell by 0.1 per cent. in the first quarter of 2008 compared to the last quarter of 2007. Manufacturing sector output grew 0.5 per cent. in 2008 Q1—up on the previous quarter’s growth in the sector, and the highest quarterly volume of manufacturing output since the first quarter of 2001—but this was offset by falls on the quarter in mining and quarrying output, and electricity, gas and water supply output. However, the figures for 2008 Q1 are preliminary estimates, subject to revision as more information becomes available.
Total production output was 0.7 per cent. higher in the first quarter of 2008 compared to the corresponding quarter in the previous year. Within the total production sector, both manufacturing and electricity, gas and water output increased in the year to the first quarter of 2008, by 1.2 per cent. and 1.7 per cent. respectively, while mining and quarrying output fell by 5.1 per cent. over the same period.