60% of UK companies to close as energy prices soar
The UK is among the top countries facing the brunt of inflation, gas prices and now energy cuts, with approximately 60% of its companies threatening to halt operations and shut down.
Citing a poll conducted by MakeUK, a lobby group for British factories, Bloomberg reported on Saturday that approximately 60% of factories in the UK are at extreme risk of shutting down as energy costs across the country continue to skyrocket, with electricity bills surging by more than 100% over the past year.
MakeUK commented: “The current crisis is leaving businesses facing a stark choice,” adding: “Cut production or shut up shop altogether if help does not come soon.”
UK officials and authorities have been facing immense pressure for the past year as a result of the gas crisis which led to the need to tackle the ensuing energy crisis, with multiple efforts of support measures to help consumers and businesses deal with the rapidly surging costs.
With inflation at a 40-year high, wages are being stretched as price rises erode the value of the pound in their pocket. The UK has especially witnessed a series of walkouts in the last months of rail workers due to poor job security and low wages.
According to a purchasing managers’ index published by S&P Global, the country’s factory sector is already in a declining pattern, while MakeUK’s survey shows that 13% of factories have diminished their operating hours or are avoiding peak periods, with 7% halting production for longer periods.
An NHS (National Health Services) chief has warned that soaring energy costs will kill more than 10,000 people this winter; a situation the NHS Confederation referred to as a "humanitarian crisis". The UK Britain announced last week a vast 80% hike in electricity and gas bills, in a dramatic worsening of the cost-of-living crisis before winter as the UK awaits a new leader.