‘Difficult winter’ is a recent term popularized after Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng after he used it earlier on Wednesday in an interview with BBC Breakfast on September 22, 2021, when he was asked for details as regarding the end of the Universal credit.
The Universal Credit is a pandemic monthly payment to families in UK by the Government. It sets expired on October. As UK faces very difficult crises, many people are advocating for the continuation of the uplift beyond the October deadline.
In UK, the energy providers are beginning to bust fears prices rise. For the average citizen, hope for a quick change might seem unreasonable. Regardless, during his interview with BBC, UK’s Prime Minister, Mr. Boris Johnson holds on to his claims that the surge in energy prices is merely a temporary development resulting from the beginning of a global economic recovery, as he tries to assure that families in UK will not have to go through a ‘difficult winter’.
In a bid to prevent any more ‘drastic and uncensored’ actions from the Prime Minister, Labour held a debate in the Commons, calling on the government to stop the proposed cut to the universal credit top-up. In response, Mr. Johnson said: “We think the best thing we can do is help people into high-skilled, high wage jobs, that is what is happening…unemployment is falling very rapidly, jobs are being created, wages are rising. And rather than raising people’s taxes to put more money into benefits, we want to see companies paying their workers more.”
However, this notion is argued by the Chief Secretary to the Treasury Bridget Phillipson who explains that working families are experiencing taxation “on a scale not seen for a generation” – and it was a result of poor government decisions and not “unforeseeable series of unhappy accidents.”
Mr. Johnson’s actions seem to have taken off on a wrong foot – and over irritable toes- as the results generated so far contradict what his plans suggest would happen…
“Incomes are coming down” Bridget continued, “prices are going up – especially energy prices – taxes are going up, rents are going up, childcare costs are going up, fuel costs are going up, rail fares are going up.
“And with empty shelves in too many shops, restaurants closing because of meat shortages, and now refrigerant shortages putting Christmas at risk, it isn’t just that people can afford less, there is also less to afford,” she told the Members of Parliament.
Though, Mr. Johnson promised the public “to move on to more sources of renewable energy”, to many Britons, the imminent long cold winter is just around the corner.
The reaction from the populace reveals that Johnson’s suggestions are largely unwelcome, as many people have communicated their dissatisfactions. A person tags on a social platform: the government as ‘hopeless’ because all they have given are ‘empty shelves’ and ‘empty promises.’
When asked about how the taxpayer can help in the current dilemma, Mr. Jonathan Brearley, the Chief Executive of the Office of Gas and Electricity Markets, OFGEM said: “We have to first of all make sure that customers are transferred and looked after, and then as we see the market evolve, we will understand better the cost implications.”
UK seems to be in a lot more trouble than government has admitted. With the reality of dissatisfied citizens, a factioned parliament, a very slow economic recovery, and the fears that there may be as few as 10 energy suppliers left by the end of the year- a sharp contrast from the 70 suppliers as of January 2021, things need to be handled very delicately in UK.