Published: 08:56, 12 June 2020
| Updated: 08:58, 12 June 2020
Business chiefs are calling for more government support to kick-start the economy in the wake of the pandemic after the latest GDP figures revealed the biggest drop since records began.
GDP - gross domestic product - is a snapshot of the economy by calculating the value of goods and services created over a certain period.
And this morning it was revealed the UK's GDP had shrunk by 20.4% in April - the first full month of lockdown.
However, May is expected to show signs of recovery as lockdown measures were eased although business leaders in the county warn against an expectation of an immediate bounce back.
Jo James, chief executive of the Kent Invicta Chamber of Commerce said: "With a monthly fall in UK GDP over 30 times the average month on month decline during the global financial crisis, the economic impact of coronavirus has been put into sharp relief.
“With lockdown restrictions gradually easing and shops beginning to reopen, April is likely to prove to be the low point for the UK economy.
"However, any prospect of a ‘V-shaped’ recovery remains unlikely, with many sectors continuing to operate at reduced capacity. Some firms, including those in our hospitality, leisure and tourism industries, may remain closed for some time and will require flexible and open-ended government support to weather the economic storm.
“Over the coming months, further action will be needed to limit the long-term economic damage and kick-start a recovery, including close gaps in government support and providing incentives to help stimulate consumer demand and business investment. Establishing air bridges between countries with low infection rates would provide a much-needed boost to key parts of the UK economy.”