Britain's economy has had its "Costa Concordia moment" and can now become the biggest in Europe, Boris Johnson has said.
The London mayor said the country is on the verge of an "economic renaissance" and threw his backing behind Chancellor George Osborne's economic plan.
Speaking at the Institute of Directors (IoD) annual convention, Mr Johnson said: "It's fair to say that the UK economy has finally reached its Costa Concordia moment.
"Because after two-and-half years of parbuckling the labour is complete and the rotation has been accomplished and though the damage is still I think manifest and the caissons have not yet been entirely drained of debt, I think you would agree that the keel is off the rocks and at last we can feel motion, relief.
"And I have no inclination whatever to hand back the wheel to the people who were on the bridge when we ran aground. And to claim to have abolished boom and bust, they were frankly only half right.
"To continue this nautical metaphor I believe that we should continue on the course we have set and that George Osborne has set. We are starting to see signs of an economic renaissance in Britain of the kind that my generation once thought would never come."
Mr Johnson pointed out that British brands are the first choice for many at the forefront of growing economies around the world.
He said: "In our lifetimes this country will not only be demographically one of the biggest economies in Europe but in output as well we have every chance of being the biggest economy in Europe."
He went on: "Around the world I see British brands catching on wherever people are in the process of embourgeoisment, which we Conservatives support and which is happening all over the place in huge numbers."