Leader: Both Truss and Sturgeon must act fast on energy bills

Assuming Liz Truss is confirmed today as Boris Johnson’s successor in Downing Street, soaring energy bills and the cost-of-living crisis will be at the very top of her in-tray.

Her opponents have had every right to criticise the absence of leadership on this issue at Westminster during the course of a protracted Tory leadership contest.

The outgoing prime minister appears to have shirked making a significant intervention during his final days in office, leaving it to his replacement to come up with a plan designed to lead the country out of the crisis.

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Ms Truss, meanwhile, has given little away on what she intends to do after securing the keys to 10 Downing Street.

Liz Truss speaking during an interview with the BBC's Laura Kuenssberg yesterday. Photo: JEFF OVERS/BBC/AFP via Getty Images
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Her reasons for doing so may be tactical. It is more likely, however, that she has yet to settle on a strategy to tackle the crisis.

She denied yesterday that she was being “coy”, telling the BBC’s Laura Kuenssberg she would take immediate action on bills and energy supply after she is elected prime minister.

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Pressed for details, she replied: “It will take a week to sort out the precise plans and make sure we are able to announce them. That is why I cannot go into details at this stage. It would be wrong.”

With less than a month until the energy cap rises to £3,549, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has been scathing about the leadership vacuum at Westminster over the course of the summer as the Conservative Party leadership contest has been taking place.

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But Ms Sturgeon must also set out what she plans to do to help households and businesses in Scotland that face the threat of bankruptcy this winter.

Tomorrow, the First Minister will unveil her administration’s Programme for Government at Holyrood.

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In addition to this, the Scottish Government has pledged to reveal the results of a fiscal review within two weeks of an emergency budget at Westminster.

Ms Sturgeon has powers at her disposal to alleviate some of the hardship that will soon be visited upon Scottish households and businesses.

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Both she and Ms Truss must demonstrate leadership by making bold commitments – and fast.