Cost of Living

I understand anxiety over rising prices and inflation. I want to assure you that the Government will continue to listen and to ensure that the policies in place do help those who need it most.

I have made my ministerial colleagues aware of my constituents' concerns and I strongly welcome the range of measures put in place, including the new three-part plan to help households with their energy bills during this challenging period.

Several external factors have driven inflationary pressures. In particular, shortages created by the reanimation of the global economy and global energy price spikes brought on by the inability of supply to keep up with demand and the Russian invasion of Ukraine. This has been particularly acute when it comes to the price of wholesale gas.

A rise in the National Living Wage will mean an extra £1,000 in the pockets of millions of people. The Government has also cut the Universal Credit taper rate and increased work allowances - which represent an effective tax cut for low income working households in receipt of UC worth £2.2 billion in 2022-23.

Furthermore, I welcome that the National Insurance personal threshold will rise further from £9,500 to £12,570 from July 2022. This will bring it in line with the equivalent Income Tax personal allowance and represents the largest increase in a personal tax threshold in British history, equivalent to a £6 billion tax cut for nearly 30 million workers and worth over £330 a year starting in July, across the entire UK. This represents the largest single personal tax cut in a decade.

I will be working with my Parliamentary colleagues to ensure the Government continues to help ordinary households up and down the country as our economy continues to recover from the shock of Coronavirus