Levelling Up Secretary Simon Clarke has said the Government’s emergency energy support package is designed to provide users with certainty for the medium term.

“We are not looking here at sticking plaster solutions. We want a lasting settlement that provides both comfort and clarity for both households and businesses,” he told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme on Thursday morning.

“This is a major attempt to draw a line and provide energy certainty for everybody in this country about energy usage in the medium term.”

The Conservative MP for Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland said the economy will suffer “enormous damage” if the Government fails to control surging energy prices.

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Ahead of Liz Truss’s announcement of details of her plan to limit price increases, the pound fell to its lowest level against the dollar since 1985 amid concerns about the scale of the borrowing required.

However, Mr Clarke told Sky News: “If we fail to act, if we don’t protect the economy against the shock of the size and scale we are talking about, then there is going to be enormous damage.

“In these circumstances I think the country will say and I think markets will respect that this is the most sensible thing to do.

“The Government is clear that a fiscally responsible approach sits at the heart of our plans but we cannot fail to respond to the magnitude of the moment.”

And he also rejected calls for a windfall tax on the oil and gas companies to help fund the Government’s emergency energy support package.

Mr Clarke told LBC: “These firms are the people we are going to be absolutely relying on to deliver that next generation of oil and gas extraction on the route to energy self-sufficiency.

“We need to go much, much further in getting new fields on line.

“That is why we need these companies to be ploughing that investment into the North Sea.

“We cannot do what Labour would do, which is just tax, tax, tax.”

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