British Truss set to be named Tory leader, new PM

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  • The winner of the leadership competition will be announced
  • Truss is expected to be the winner
  • Starts the transfer process

LONDON, Sept 5 (Reuters) – Liz Truss is set to be named leader of the ruling Conservative Party and Britain’s next prime minister on Monday, poised to take office at a time when the country faces a cost-of-living crisis, to industrial unrest and recession.

After weeks of an often moody party leadership race that pits Truss against Rishi Sunak, a former finance minister, Monday’s announcement at 11:30 GMT will trigger the start of a power handover from Boris Johnson . He was forced to announce his resignation in July after months of scandal.

On Tuesday, the winner will travel to Scotland to meet Queen Elizabeth, who will ask the new leader to form a government.

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A long-time favorite in the race to replace Johnson, Truss, if nominated, will become the Conservatives’ fourth prime minister since the 2015 election. During that time, the country has been rocked from crisis to crisis and now faces what is expected to be a long recession triggered by soaring inflation that hit 10.1% in July.

The Foreign Secretary under Boris Johnson, Truss, 47, has vowed to act quickly to tackle Britain’s cost of living crisis, saying that within a week she would come up with a plan to deal with rising energy bills and securing future fuel supplies.

Speaking in a TV interview on Sunday, she declined to give details of the measures she says will reassure millions of people who fear they won’t be able to pay their fuel bills as winter approaches. Read more

She signaled during her leadership campaign that she would challenge the conventions by scrapping tax increases and cutting other levies that some economists said would fuel inflation.

This, together with the commitment to review the remit of the Bank of England while protecting its independence, prompted some investors to dump the pound and government bonds.

The Institute for Fiscal Studies last month questioned whether Britain’s next prime minister could make major permanent tax cuts. Read more

‘SECOND TOUGHEST POST-WAR BRIEF’

Truss faces a long, expensive and difficult to-do list, which opposition lawmakers say is the result of 12 years of bad Conservative government. Several have called for a snap election – which Truss said she would not allow.

Veteran Conservative lawmaker David Davis described the challenges she would face as prime minister as “probably the second toughest post-war prime minister’s term” after Conservative Margaret Thatcher in 1979.

“Actually, I don’t think any of the candidates, any of them really know how big this is going to be,” he said, adding that the costs could be in the tens of billions of pounds. .

Truss said she would appoint a strong cabinet, abandoning what a source close to her called a “presidential style” of government.

She will first address the pressing issue of soaring energy prices. Average annual household utility bills are set to jump 80% in October to 3,549 pounds ($4,084), before an expected rise to 6,000 pounds in 2023, decimating personal finances.

Britain has fallen behind other major European countries in its bid to support consumer energy bills, which opposition lawmakers blame on a ‘zombie’ government unable to act while the Tories led their leadership race. Read more

In May, the government introduced a £15billion support package to help households pay their energy bills as part of its £37billion Cost of Living Support Scheme.

Italy has earmarked more than 52 billion euros ($51.75 billion) so far this year to help its people. In France, increases in electricity bills are capped at 4% and Germany said on Sunday it would spend at least 65 billion euros to protect consumers and businesses from rising inflation.

($1 = 0.8690 pounds)

($1 = 1.0049 euros)

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Reporting by Elizabeth Piper Editing by Frances Kerry

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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