BoE Sir governor Mervyn King
The recovery of the UK economy depends on the future of the eurozone and the handling of the eurozone crisis, according to Bank of England (BoE) governor Sir Mervyn King.
King made his comments in an interview with Channel 4 News, the first public interview he has given during the past 10 years in office.
Casting doubts on the ability of eurozone policy makers to keep the single currency union intact, King said the eurozone crisis was hanging over the UK like a "black cloud of uncertainty".
He added: "What [recovery] will depend on critically, I think, is what happens in the euro area and also the rest of the world.
"(Policymakers) have persisted with trying to keep all the countries in the eurozone ... and tried very hard to keep the show on the road. But I don't think there's any guarantee that they will be able to do that."
King said resolving the eurozone crisis is important for the UK economy as 50 percent of Britain's exports still go to the euro area.
Contrary to the BoE's initial predictions that the economy would grow by five percent by the end of 2012, the UK has entered its second recession in three years.
However, King endorsed George Osborne's debt-reduction plan and said the economy has shown signs of slow recovery. He also stressed the need for banking reforms to avoid future crises.
"We're beginning to see a few signs now of a slow recovery, but it will be a slow recovery. After a banking crisis one can't expect to get back to normal and I fear it will take a long time."
Considering the external factors affecting the economy and the slow growth, King said it would be "acceptable" for the coalition government to miss the debt-reduction goal.
"If it's because the world economy has grown slowly and so we, in turn, have grown slowly then it would be acceptable to be in that position, yes.
"The plan did allow for the fact that if the economy were to grow slowly, then taxes would not rise as quickly and spending would be higher - so the deficit would be bigger."
BoE has already injected £325bn into the economy and is midway through a four-month asset purchase programme that will add £50bn.
Though King did not mention the extension of the asset purchase programme, the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) is expected to approve another £50bn in November considering less than encouraging growth figures from the manufacturing and construction sectors, taking the total value of the asset purchase programme to £425bn.
On his ten years in the job, King said following his favourite football team was more stressful than the top job in Britain's banking sector.
"Supporting Aston Villa is much more stressful than being Governor of the Bank of England.
"I've been very accountable and I'm happy for others to pass judgment... I will go on doing what I believe is the right thing to do."
To contact the editor, e-mail: