New Prime Minister Liz Truss will tomorrow (Thursday) say just how her government plans to save households and businesses from financial caused by soaring energy bills.
At her first Prime Minister’s Questions, Ms Truss rejected calls by Opposition leader Keir Starmer for a windfall tax on the estimated excess profits of £170 billion made by oil and gas companies.
She told MPs: “I will make sure that in our energy plan we will help to support businesses and people with the immediate price crisis, as well as making sure there are long-term supplies available.
“I understand that people across our country are struggling with the cost of living and they are struggling with their energy bills.
“That is why I, as Prime Minister, will take immediate action to help people with the cost of their energy bills and I will be making an announcement to this House on that tomorrow and giving people certainty to make sure that they are able to get through this winter and be able to have the energy supplies and be able to afford it.”
“I understand that people across our country are struggling
with the cost of living and they are struggling with their energy bills.”
She told the Labour Party leader: “I am against a windfall tax, I believe it is the wrong thing to be putting companies off investing in the United Kingdom just when we need to be growing the economy,” she said.
He said refusing to tax the excess profits made by oil and gas firms would leave taxpayers footing the cost of the mooted price cap or price freeze for decades.
“The Prime Minister knows she has now choice but to back an energy price freeze, but it won’t be cheap and the real choice, the political choice is who is going to pay.
“Is she really telling us that she is going to leave this vast excess profits on the table and make working people foot the bill for decades to come?”
For the first time in years at Prime Minister’s Question clear dividing lines on fiscal policy were apparent between government and opposition.
“There’s nothing new about the Tory
fantasy of trickle-down economics”
Ms Truss also made clear she intends to scrap next year’s planned increases in corporation tax for businesses from 19 per cent to 25 per cent.
She said it would deter investors and the UK cannot “tax its way to growth”.
Sir Keir responded: “Not only is the Prime Minister refusing to extend the windfall tax, she’s also choosing to hand the water companies polluting our beaches a tax cut. She’s choosing to hand the banks a tax cut.
“Add it all together and companies that are already doing well are getting a £17 billion tax cut while working people pay for the cost-of-living crisis, stroke victims wait an hour for an ambulance and criminals walk the streets with impunity.”
He continued: “There’s nothing new about the Tory fantasy of trickle-down economics, nothing new about this Tory Prime Minister who nodded through every decision that got us into this mess and now says how terrible it is, and can’t she see there’s nothing new about a Tory Prime Minister who when asked who pays says ‘it’s you, the working people of Britain’?”
The Prime Minister told him: “I will take immediate action to make sure we have lower taxes and we grow the economy, and that way I will ensure we have a positive future for our country and we get Britain moving.”