PMQs: Liz Truss and Sir Keir Starmer clash as new PM doubles down on opposition to windfall tax

Liz Truss used her first Prime Minister’s Questions to promise to work with MPs across the House to tackle “the challenges we face” at a “vital time for our country”.

Liz Truss and Sir Keir Starmer clashed amid the cost of living crisis as the new PM once again confirmed her opposition to a windfall tax on energy companies.

Starmer quizzed Truss on her stance on a windfall tax and questioned who would pay for an energy package saying that Truss is proposing “more borrowing than is needed'” because she is ruling out a windfall tax and taxpayers will pay for generations to come.

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The Prime Minister accepted that the country must address the energy supply saying she favours getting more energy from the North Sea, and more from nuclear, which Labour oppose adding: “The hospitality industry is vital and 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.”

Prime Minister Liz Truss speaks during Prime Minister's Questions in the House of Commons, London.Prime Minister Liz Truss speaks during Prime Minister's Questions in the House of Commons, London.
Prime Minister Liz Truss speaks during Prime Minister's Questions in the House of Commons, London.

The Prime Minister also confirmed that she will deliver the government’s energy bills plan in the Commons tomorrow in a bid to ease the energy cost crisis.

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer told the Commons that “energy producers will make £170bn in excess profits over the next two years”.

He added: “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?”

Liz Truss replied that she understood people were “struggling with the cost of living” and energy bills, adding: “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.”

The Prime Minister added she would reform the UK’s overall energy mix by building more nuclear power stations and exploring more fossil fuel supplies in the North Sea.

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Liz Truss opened her first Prime Minister’s Questions by telling MPs: “I am honoured to take my place as Prime Minister in this House and to take on the responsibility at a vital time for our country.

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“I am determined to deliver for everybody across our United Kingdom and I will work constructively with all members of this House to tackle the challenges we face.”

Ms Truss was first asked about leaked audio which suggested she believed British workers needed “more graft”, and replied by insisting she is determined to deliver an economy with “high wages and high-skilled jobs”.

She added: “The way I will achieve that is through reducing taxes on people across our country and boosting economic growth.”

Prime Minister Liz Truss arrived in the House of Commons to cheers from Conservative MPs, with Northern Ireland Secretary Chris Heaton-Harris having to pause his remarks at the despatch box due to the cheers.