Tory MP Bob Seely warns ‘threat of war is rather more real’
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Conservative MP Bob Seely has called on the UK to learn to be less dependent on other countries for energy amid rising gas prices. Mr Seely told GB News on Monday that the “threat of war is rather more real” and the UK needed to learn to be more self-reliant in key areas sectors of the economy. He warned that tensions in Ukraine and Taiwan could easily escalate and stressed the need for Britain to practice resilience amid the energy price shock.
Mr Seely told GB News: “Right now is the time to start weaning ourselves off dependency.
“Because we have seen in PPE during the Covid crisis, we have seen are lack of resilience in cyber when we are endlessly attacked it seems by China and Russia.
“When it comes to energy supply now is the time to start thinking of greater resilience.
“It is not the time to start saying no to energy from Norway or France because we are not producing enough in our own country.
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“But we have to start thinking about these things because we don’t know what the world is going to look like in the next few years.
“It is getting nastier and it is getting more aggressive, and it is getting more complicated.
“I think sadly the threat of war is rather more real in Ukraine and Taiwan which could spiral out of control.
“Actually I think now is a really good time to start understanding we need to be more reliant on ourselves.”
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It comes as Tory frontbencher Lord Agnew of Oulton said spiralling energy costs were nothing to do with supply shortages, but were due to a “geopolitical move” by Russia to put pressure on Europe.
The Treasury minister’s unequivocal comments appeared to go further than the Government has gone before in pointing the finger directly at Moscow for the current crisis.
It follows claims that Russia had been limiting gas supplies in a bid to prod regulators in Europe into moving quickly to certify the controversial new Nord Stream 2 pipeline.
Last week, a suggestion by Russian President Vladimir Putin that his country could boost natural gas supplies to Europe led to a drop in prices.
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Pressed in the House of Lords over rising energy costs and calls for increased intervention and public ownership of “vital utilities”, Lord Agnew said: “The current squeeze on gas prices is nothing to do with the quantity of gas available.
“It is a geopolitical move by Russia to put pressure on Europe and we are caught up in that.
“Public ownership of our own utilities would make no difference.”
Ministers and officials are due to continue to hold talks with industry bosses this week in a bid to stop firms from going to the wall in the face of hikes in energy costs.
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