Brexit pledge to cut VAT on heating bills must be honoured by Boris Johnson – The Yorkshire Post says

BORIS JOHNSON’S political predicament over the energy and cost of living crisis stems, in part, from the failure of his predecessors to invest in this country’s infrastructure so it was not so exposed to global factors, and fluctuations in world oil prices, outside of its control.

What should the Government do to tackle rising heating bills?
What should the Government do to tackle rising heating bills?

However this will be cold comfort to all those families, disillusioned with the Prime Minister, who are now receiving eyewatering increases in their heating bills – and a realisation that this outgoing will become the biggest monthly bill for many households.

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And the issue of trust – now fundamental to Mr Johnson’s premiership – is put under further strain by his reluctance to now honour a EU referendum pledge when he and his fellow Vote Leave campaigner Michael Gove, now the Levelling Up Secretary, promised action to cut VAT bills in the aftermath of Brexit.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson in his Uxbridge constituency yesterday after a visit to a Boots Pharmacy coronavirus vaccination clinic.

“In 1993, VAT on household energy bills was imposed. This makes gas and electricity much more expensive... when we Vote Leave, we will be able to scrap this unfair and damaging tax,” they wrote in The Sun newspaper shortly before the 2016 vote.

Even a political escapologist as renowned as Mr Johnson cannot deny the content of a bylined column and such a move would signify that he is, at the very least, exercised by, potentially, the biggest hike in living costs for a generation – and one that will hit hardest all those on low or fixed incomes.

And while there have been reports of a high-powered meeting this week between the PM, Chancellor Rishi Sunak and Kwasi Kwarteng, the Business and Energy Secretary, there remains a suspicion that Downing Street has been so preoccupied with its own troubles that it has lost sight of the scale of the mounting energy crisis, and the need for a comprehensive plan of action, as more families find themselves in the awful position of having to choose between heating and eating.

Kwasi Kwarteng is the Business and Energy Secretary.

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