Rishi Sunak denies financial support was a ‘distraction’ from Partygate, warns further support is unlikely

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The Chancellor warned MPs in a special committee that further support in the autumn was unlikely, despite forecasts that bills will continue to rise

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Sunak: “Further support is unlikely”

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Mr Sunak told MPs that he believes the measures announced – including a £650 payment for 8 million households – will not result in higher inflation.

Asked if further support will be announced in the autumn when energy bills are expected to rise by a further £700.

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He said: “What we have accomplished is significant and extends to the end of the financial year.”

“I think we’ve actually created something now that gives people the support they need, but … it’s not possible for one government, no government, no chancellor to try to offset all the increases in people’s cost of living.

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“But where we can make a meaningful difference to lighten some of the burden we can and should, and we’ve done that.”

“I am confident that we have the means and determination to bring inflation down over time.”

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The Chancellor acknowledged that no specific analysis had been carried out on the impact of the stimulus package on child poverty.

He said the biggest cause of child poverty is children growing up in unemployed households.

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Mr Sunak said he disagreed with a statement released today by Jesse Norman, a former Treasury Secretary, criticizing Boris Johnson.

Mr Norman, who served as finance secretary at the Treasury, shared a letter on Twitter criticizing the Prime Minister’s behavior over the past few months.

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The former Treasury Secretary, who was previously a long-time supporter of Mr Johnson, said the Prime Minister had “guided a culture of random breaking the law” in relation to Downing Street parties.

He called Mr Johnson’s claim that he was “confirmed” by the Sue Gray report “grotesque”.

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Mr Sunak said he disagreed with Mr Norman’s comments.

He also dismissed allegations that the announcement of the financial support package was intended to distract from the findings of the Sue Gray report, which was released the day before the support was announced.

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Mr Sunak insisted he had announced the support package at a time when the government was in the best position to know how much support would be needed.

What did Rishi Sunak announce last month?

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On May 27, the Chancellor announced a £15 billion package of measures including an unexpected tax or levy on oil and gas companies.

The announcement came after calls for a support package to help people with rising living costs, largely due to higher energy prices.

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The package provides a one-off payment of £650 to 8 million of the poorest households, with 8 million pensioners receiving a £300 payment and 6 million disabled people receiving £150.

The Chancellor has also scrapped a previously announced £200 loan for the cost of energy bills, replacing it with a £40 grant available to all households.

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The package will be funded by around £10bn in additional borrowing and £5bn from “deadweight tax”, but Mr Sunak insisted he had a “responsible tax policy”.

He said tax breaks for innovation would ensure the windfall tax doesn’t reduce green investment.

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