Businesses like pubs to get energy bill support for more than six months, Liz Truss confirms

The prime minister confirmed to Deputy Political Editor Anushka Asthana that smaller businesses like pubs will receive financial help for more than the six months set out

The government will provide longer term financial support to businesses that are particularly vulnerable to soaring energy bills, Liz Truss has told ITV News.

Smaller businesses like pubs that are less likely to be able to invest in their own energy supply will receive help stretching beyond the six months first set out, the prime minister confirmed.

Ms Truss also did not rule out further help next year for the poorest struggling to pay their energy bills.

Speaking to ITV News during a trip to New York for the UN General Assembly, the prime minister said her government will introduce a scheme for businesses that is "similar" to the £2,500 energy cap that is being put into place for households for two years.

It was previously said the support package for businesses - to be announced on Wednesday - would only last for six months.

However, the prime minister confirmed on Tuesday that the support will be in place for vulnerable businesses beyond that.

"We will make sure businesses are protected from those very high prices that were being predicted and what I can say is that for businesses that are vulnerable, who don't have the wherewithal to invest in their own energy supply, we will be providing support in the longer term," she said.

"And that does include businesses like pubs."

Ms Truss confirmed Business Secretary Jacob Rees-Mogg is conducting a review to determine exactly which types of businesses will receive support on a longer term scale.

That review will be completed within three months.

"But I can reassure people that own pubs that those are exactly the types of businesses that will get that longer term support," she added.

Despite the energy price guarantee coming into effect on October 1, critics say that many will still struggle to pay their eye-watering energy bills.

Ms Truss did not rule out further support for the most vulnerable households next year

Ms Truss highlighted that additional support will be in place for Universal Credit claimants this winter, as well as the £400 energy rebate for households and a reverse on the National Insurance increase.

But when asked whether she would consider repeating the winter energy support package for the most vulnerable households next year, Ms Truss did not rule out further help.

"Next year of course, we will continue to assess the situation as we move forward," she said.

A widely-anticipated mini-budget, to be delivered by her chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng on Friday, will set out further details of help for households and businesses struggling amid the cost of living crisis.

"This Friday, we've got a fiscal statement by the chancellor that will outline the steps that we are taking and the overall cost of the package," Ms Truss added

"But I understand that people are very, very concerned and I would love to be providing them with reassurance because it's important that we help households through this difficult time."

Ms Truss and her chancellor have drawn criticism from opposition MPs by considering removing a cap on bankers' bonuses as part of her promises to boost the economy.

'Some measures will be unpopular. There'll be vested interests that oppose them'

The cap, introduced by European Union legislation in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis, limits annual pay-outs to twice a banker’s salary.

When pressed on how removing the cap will help anyone other than bankers, the PM defended the plans and admitted "some measures will be unpopular".

Asked whether she was "intensely relaxed about people getting filthy rich", she said she was "absolutely focused" on growing the economy and one way of doing so is to make it "competitive".

"And that will mean that the towns and cities that haven't had the investment they need, will get the investment they need," she added.

"It means that people setting up their own businesses will have less red tape to deal with so that they can help contribute to our economy."