Easington MP Grahame Morris is calling on Conservative MPs to ease the cost-of-living crisis by supporting Labour’s Queen’s Speech amendment for a one-off windfall tax on oil and gas producers.

Mr Morris’ intervention comes as oil and gas producers make record profits from the energy crisis, and families struggle with the highest energy price rises since the 1970s.

The Conservative Government have refused to implement a windfall tax, describing companies like BP and Shell as ‘struggling’. In the first three months of 2022, BP and Shell alone have made £12.37bn in profits.

In February, Murray Auchincloss, BP’s Chief Financial Officer, said, “Certainly, it’s possible that we’re getting more cash than we know what to do with.” BP’s chief executive, Bernard Looney, asked what investment projects he would cancel if a windfall tax was imposed on the firm’s profits replied, “None”.

Mr Morris has noted that as households spend more of their income on energy, this will impact the wider economy and jobs, highlighting the support for a windfall tax from major retailers such as Tesco and John Lewis.

Easington MP Grahame Morris said:

“The energy crisis is the biggest squeeze on family incomes for a generation. The Government have failed to come up with any meaningful solutions. The increase in National Insurance wiped out the Council Tax rebate, and an imposed £200 loan in October will have to pay back over five years. These measures do not protect family budgets; they underwrite ever-higher profits for gas and oil producers.

The Government have the wrong priorities. Conservative backbenchers must force Ministers to change course or explain to families why they think it is right to force people to choose between heating and eating.

As energy companies soaking up record profits reduces the amount of money in the local economy, making life even harder for our small independent business community contending with lower turnover and higher costs. The loss of jobs and businesses due to falling and stagnating incomes will only decimate our high streets further and make life harder for people in need of work.

The energy companies recognise their profits are excessive. They have confirmed that a windfall tax to help UK families and the economy would not undermine existing or future investment in renewable technology.

The battle between the Prime Minister and Chancellor must stop, and focus returned to rescuing the economy from a government-created cost of living crisis.”

Ed Miliband MP, Labour’s Shadow Secretary of State of Climate Change and Net Zero, said:

“As energy bills rise by record amounts for millions of families, it is shameful that Boris Johnson and Rishi Sunak are refusing to back a windfall tax that could tackle the cost of living crisis.

“On Tuesday, Labour will give the Government another chance to support our windfall tax. It tells you everything you need to know about this Government that they continue to prioritise the oil and gas companies making record profits instead of standing up for working families, and pensioners.

“Britain needs a Government that is on working people’s side. Only Labour can tackle the cost of living crisis and deliver the stronger economy we need.”

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