‘We have to take the hit!’ Vine panellist says UK must calm down over rising energy bills

Jeremy Vine panellist says 'we have to take the hit' over rising bills

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Mike Parry, author and journalist, told Jeremy Vine on 5 that “some of us are going to have to take the pain” as the energy price cap could reach over £5000 by the middle of 2023. Mr Parry described the absurdity of an energy price cap that is roughly 60 percent of the national pension, saying that he would happily “give back the £400” handed to homeowners if it would help alleviate the stress on the “most vulnerable in society”. 

Mr Parry: “What I would say is we have got to stop the most vulnerable in society from literally going bankrupt. 

“Those figures you have just shown there, £5000 I understand is about 60 percent of the national pension, so you can’t have that much of a pension gone just on energy. 

“But what I would say is some of us are going to have to take the pain. When international situations come together to cause great stress, you cannot just get a rubber and rub it all out. 

“You’re going to have to say, ‘Right, we’re all going to have to take the hit. We might have to miss a holiday next year or I might have to not buy a new car next year or not move house, but we have to take the hit. I am lucky, I have had a good life. I will give back the £400, okay. No problem at all.” 

The energy price cap has been rising exponentially since August 2020, as the pandemic began to take its toll on energy supplies. The war on Ukraine, which began in February of this year, also significantly exaggerated energy supplies given the West’s reliance on Russia for supplies. 

There have been three rises since August, when the cap was set at just over £1000, with the next rise expected in October. 

In April of this year, the cap was set at £1971 but energy industry analysts Cornwall Insight predicted this month that by October, that cap could be as high as £3,582, nearly double the current figure. 

And forecasts for the next couple of caps, in January 2023 and then in April of that same year, look even worse. 

Cornwall Insight has suggested that the January 2023 cap could be as high as £4,266, and the April forecast suggests a possible breach of the £5000 mark. 

The Labour Party today announced a £29billion support package aimed at freezing the current cap to protect against extortionate energy prices. 

But critics have expressed scepticism about the financial soundness of such a move, suggesting that it could worsen inflation and delay the inevitable squeeze on Britons. 

The Director of the Institute for Fiscal Studies Paul Johnson described the policy as an “illusion”, while a Tory MP said it was a “short term solution”. 

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Conservative former Northern Ireland secretary Brandon Lewis, who is supporting Liz Truss, branded Labour’s energy plan a “poor policy”.

He said: “I think it’s overarchingly a poor policy because it doesn’t resolve the issues of our economy, it potentially creates bigger inflation and debt problems in the future.

“What we do need to do is help people have more money in their pockets to deal with the challenges, set out (a) structured way that we can help people, that’s what an emergency budget will do.”

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