Jacob Rees-Mogg was named the new Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) following Liz Truss’ cabinet reshuffle last night.
He will take on the BEIS department from Kwasi Kwarteng, who has been named Chancellor.
Rees-Mogg tweeted that it was an “honour” to be appointed Business Secretary.
It is an honour to be appointed as the new Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. I look forward to serving the Prime Minister and the country during the challenging times ahead. https://t.co/celkpMOHBe
— Jacob Rees-Mogg (@Jacob_Rees_Mogg) September 6, 2022
He said: “As Business Secretary my overriding mission is to deliver affordable and plentiful energy to the British people and to make the economy as efficient, innovative and dynamic as possible. This will be the department for growth.”
The incoming Secretary of State has a hefty in-tray to deal with – with the Government pushing to boost domestic energy generation to ensure the country’s supply security.
This includes decisions over whether to reform planning to boost onshore wind and potentially fracking, alongside meeting ambitious targets for offshore wind, solar, nuclear and oil and gas outlined in the energy security strategy.
British households are facing an unprecedented squeeze on living standards, with wholesale costs soaring following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
While there is likely to be a vast support package for households this winter, there are also genuine fears over supply shortages.
This means that despite Rees-Mogg’s call for growth, his first few months in office could involve him scrambling to secure more energy supplies to meet our needs.
However, former government advisor and awards director of the Business Champion Awards Richard Alvin sounded a note of caution to Rees-Mogg’s appointment, saying: “for many months now the minister has been saying that staff must go back to the office and work and business can only function in a formal office environment, for the now business minister to enter this role at such a crucial time for the country with this mindset is very worrying.”