Industry leaders urge Johnson to stop his ministers bickering over gas situation.

British industry leaders have urged Boris Johnson to stop his cabinet ministers bickering over how to address the soaring cost of gas, warning that factories will close unless the government intervenes.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has been rowing with the Treasury over whether the government should support businesses struggling because of energy prices.

BEIS secretary Kwasi Kwarteng on Monday made a formal request to chancellor of the exchequer Rishi Sunak to help industries that use a lot of energy, including steel, paper and ceramics. The request followed a Treasury briefing accusing Mr Kwarteng of “making things up” after he claimed to be in talks with the chancellor over supports for industry.

Downing Street on Monday backed Mr Kwarteng, saying “ministers from BEIS are working across government, including with Treasury, on this important issue, the challenges that are currently facing industry in light of global gas prices, and that will continue”.

Gareth Stace, director general of UK Steel, said it was time for the prime minister, who is on holiday in Marbella, Spain, to take charge of the crisis.

“With the reported government infighting between the Treasury and BEIS, the prime minister now needs to bang ministerial heads together, take control and remember that if he does nothing then his levelling-up ambition will be left in tatters,” he told LBC radio.

“I’m sure he can get on the phone and get talking to them, but to my mind now is not the time for a prime minister to be on holiday, from the steel sector point of view.”

The surge in gas prices has driven some British energy companies out of business, and Mr Stace said steelmakers were facing energy prices five times higher than last year.

“Longer and more frequent pauses in production are becoming a fact of life. These circumstances are simply not sustainable for the sector. We urge the Government to take action, as has been done in Italy and Portugal, to support the sector.”

Reassurance

Labour’s shadow chancellor Rachel Reeves has written to Mr Sunak, accusing him of being missing in action and calling on him to support industries most affected by the crisis.

“The government should be protecting and supporting them through a crisis which has come about from their own lack of planning. They have a duty to get an immediate grip on this situation, and businesses need reassurance that this is happening,” she said.

“It’s crucial to also see the government out reassuring the public that they won’t be hit with more rising costs as millions are left with less money in their pockets. Not doing so is looking increasingly out of touch.”

On Monday evening Mr Kwarteng struck a long-term deal to keep CF Fertilisers, a major supplier of carbon- dioxide, in business without a government bailout. The company’s plant in northeast England was reopened last month after the government paid tens of millions of pounds to compensate for the high cost of gas.

The Irish Times

The Irish Times online. Latest news including sport, analysis, business, weather and more from the definitive brand of quality news in Ireland.

https://www.irishtimes.com/

Monarch or revolutionary? What leaders do Africans yearn for? - DW News.

Monarch or revolutionary? What leaders do Africans yearn for? - DW News.

Soldiers have been deployed across schools in Eswatini where students have been protesting. They are demanding political reforms and are calling for the release of two MP's who were arrested during pro-democracy protests earlier this year. Eswatin...

Hannity blasts 'vile' Biden amid reports of Taliban killings, inflation at home.

Hannity blasts 'vile' Biden amid reports of Taliban killings, inflation at home.

Host Sean Hannity sounds off in his Opening Monologue #hannity #foxnews Subscribe to Fox News! Watch more Fox News Video: Watch Fox News Channel Live: FOX News Channel (FNC) is a 24-hour all-encompassing news service delivering breaking news as we...

Boris Johnson joins Keir Starmer to lay flowers at church where MP Sir David Amess was murdered.

Boris Johnson joins Keir Starmer to lay flowers at church where MP Sir David Amess was murdered.

Boris Johnson has today paid a sombre visit to the church where Sir David Amess was murdered to lay flowers. The Prime Minister was joined by Priti Patel and Sir Keir Starmer in a rare show of cross-party unity during the visit, which comes less t...

Tucker: What is the point of having a government?

Tucker: What is the point of having a government?

Tucker Carlson and Maine State Sen. Lisa Keim, R-Oxford, sound off on vaccine mandates causing mass job shortages among first responders. Subscribe to Fox News! Watch more Fox News Video: Watch Fox News Channel Live: FOX News Channel (FNC) is a 24...

Stabbing of UK lawmaker Amess declared a 'terrorist incident' - DW News.

Stabbing of UK lawmaker Amess declared a 'terrorist incident' - DW News.

In the United Kingdom where the police say the death of David Amess was a terror incident. The conservative lawmaker was stabbed multiple times as he met with constituents. A 25-year-old man is in custody. Police now say their investigation has re...

College Football Rolls On As Concerns Over Covid 'Super Spreader' Events Fade.

College Football Rolls On As Concerns Over Covid 'Super Spreader' Events Fade.

NBC News' Shaquille Brewster speaks to fans and medical experts about the silver lining surrounding the 2021 college football season.  » Subscribe to NBC News: » Watch more NBC video: NBC News Digital is a collection of innovative and powerful new...