Sir John Major calls for tax on energy profits

Former Prime Minister Sir John Major has called for George Osborne to impose a windfall tax on UK energy firms. Speaking at a Parliamentary Press Gallery lunch today, he said […]

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By Priyanka Shrestha

Former Prime Minister Sir John Major has called for George Osborne to impose a windfall tax on UK energy firms.

Speaking at a Parliamentary Press Gallery lunch today, he said the recent price rises – announced by SSE, British Gas and npower so far – were “unacceptable” and many would have to choose between heating their homes and eating.

Sir John said: “I do not see how it can be in any way acceptable that with energy prices rising broadly 4% in terms of costs that the price to the consumer should rise by the 9-10% that we are hearing.

“I do not regard that as acceptable at all by the energy companies… And 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. That is not acceptable.”

He added Labour leader Ed Miliband’s “heart was in the right place but his head has gone walkabout” when asked about the party’s plan to freeze energy prices if it wins the next election.

In response to the comments the ex-PM made, Mr Miliband tweeted: “Sir John Major makes Labour’s argument: David Cameron stands up for the energy companies not hard-pressed families.”

The former Prime Minister served in Downing Street between 1990 and 1997.