Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Sir John Major Hits Out at 'Unacceptable' Hike in Prices and Calls for Excess Profit Tax on Big Six Energy Firms

Sir John Major, ex-Conservative Prime Minister
THE INDEPENDENT: Former Prime Minister says energy companies should fund people struggling to pay winter bills

Sir John Major challenged ministers to levy a windfall tax this winter on energy companies’ profits to protect the neediest in society as he warned Conservative chiefs of the electoral dangers of vacating the political centre ground.

The former Prime Minister urged his party to reconnect with voters in the North of England, where it had been relegated to the political fringe, and to help poor families struggling to make ends meet in tower blocks and council estates.

He predicted the Government would have to step in to prevent families from having to choose between heating and eating if there is a bitterly cold spell of weather.

Both Downing Street and Conservative sources distanced themselves from his comments, which follow Labour leader Ed Miliband’s promise of a 19-month freeze on gas and electricity prices if he wins the next general election.

But they failed to rule out the move entirely, stressing they had “no plans” to impose a windfall tax on the profits of the Big Six energy companies which are raising prices by up to ten per cent this year.

Speaking at a Westminster lunch, Sir John said Mr Miliband’s heart “was in the right place” but his head had “gone walkabout”.

The former Prime Minister added: “He did touch on an issue that’s very important. The private sector is something the Conservative party support, but when the private sector goes wrong or behaves badly I think it is entirely right to make changes and put it right.”

He said: “It is not acceptable to me, it ought not to be acceptable to anyone, that many people are going to have to choose between keeping warm and eating.” » | Nigel Morris | Deputy Political Editor | Tuesday, October 22, 2013

My comment:

Isn't it about time we starting thinking about re-nationalising these utility companies? These companies make excessive profits on the backs of consumers, pay no heed to their needs, have no need to increase prices because profits are already extremely healthy, and are increasing prices only to line the pockets of the fat cats that run the organisations. Enough is enough! Privatisation seemed like a good idea at the time. It has failed. The utilities should be placed back into the hands of the people. – © Mark

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