Billionaire industrialist Sir Jim Ratcliffe has blamed the Government for Britain’s gas crisis and warned that sky-high prices will last throughout winter. The Ineos boss said the UK could be forced to shut down industry amid a chronic shortage of gas, with catastrophic implications for the economy. Asked if the country could run out of gas in the event of a cold winter, Sir Jim said: “Yeah, in which case then, what you would do is you’d shut down industry”. A lack of storage has left the UK particularly vulnerable to the global gas supply crunch. Asked who was to blame, Sir Jim told ITV: “That’s [the] government. That’s a strategic issue for energy supplies in the UK, you need some storage, and we’ve got 10 days. Ten days’ storage is a bit pathetic really for a nation as important as the UK, on the continent they’ve got 40 or 50 days’ storage.” His comments came as a major wholesale gas supplier decided to stop supplying its remaining domestic utility clients after several were pushed out of business amid soaring wholesale prices.
Telegraph 13th Oct 2021 read more »
Britain could run out of gas in a cold winter, forcing industry to shut down, Sir Jim Ratcliffe, the billionaire industrialist, has warned. The boss of Ineos, the petrochemicals giant, said that gas prices were likely to remain high throughout the winter and that it was possible there would be insufficient supplies for consumers and businesses alike. This contradicts government assurances that Britain does not face a supply crisis and comes as two more energy suppliers, together serving 250,000 households, collapsed yesterday. The demise of Pure Planet and Colorado Energy means that a dozen companies have collapsed since the start of August, leaving almost two million households facing increases in energy bills of hundreds of pounds a year as they are moved to new suppliers. Wholesale gas prices have risen six-fold over the past year and more than doubled in the past two months alone, amid a global supply shortage. Analysts say that Britain’s position is particularly precarious because of its unusually low gas storage capacity.
Times 14th Oct 2021 read more »
The energy squeeze and pressure on supply chains means Kwarteng is a cabinet minister Britons are going to be seeing a lot more of during the cold weather. Already, on Sky News, the presenter Trevor Phillips has asked him if Britons should put on an extra jumper to save on heating bills. Kwarteng is far too canny to fall into that trap. He responded that he would never advise anyone on how many layers to wear. Underneath it all, who is Kwasi Kwarteng? It is a question that will be asked with increasing frequency, especially after his victory over the chancellor this week. To recap: in an interview on Sunday, Kwarteng said he was in talks with the Treasury on “soft loans” for industry over energy bills. A Treasury figure accused him of making up the talks. By Monday he had won: at the instigation of No 10 the talks — and loans — were on.
Times 13th Oct 2021 read more »
A return to $100-a-barrel oil was “quite possible”, President Putin said yesterday as he insisted that Russia was doing everything possible to stabilise crude markets. He claimed that Russia would supply more gas to Europe if requested and dismissed as “complete nonsense” accusations that Moscow was holding back supplies for political reasons, such as to secure the start of its Nordstream 2 pipeline.
Times 14th Oct 2021 read more »