The last thing that the UK needed right now was a cut in the VAT on gas

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I just posted this thread on Twitter:


A cut in the VAT on gas is just about the worst way for this government to achieve three goals. The first is helping those suffering financial stress. The second is cutting carbon emissions. The third is paving the way to sustainable energy. A short thread....

This cut will not help the poorest much because they tend to have the smallest properties and so the smallest gas bills. It will help the wealthy a lot more, because they usually have large homes. So, this plan is a subsidy to the best-off, not the least well off.

If the government wanted to help the poorest with their bills it would keep the £20 Universal Credit uplift in place. It might also increase child benefit. Both of these are reasonably targeted. But this VAT cut is a simple giveaway where most goes to the best-off.

And for cutting carbonic emissions reducing the cost of energy is the worst thing to do right now, and just before the COP. This is the clearest indication that the government is not serious about cutting energy use. The cut will increase our carbon emissions.

And if you were going to cut VAT you should do it on the least harmful energy people consume - which is electricity - and not gas, which is much worse. So, the subsidy also leads away from appropriate future energy policy.

Yet again our government manages to get everything wrong but somehow helps out their friends. Could that really be chance?