Europe

Boris breaks silence to warn of new ‘issues’ as shelves could remain empty for Christmas

Boris Johnson holds first meeting of his new Cabinet

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Touching down in the US, the Prime Minister admitted “bottlenecks” were being reported across the supply chain. While he could not reveal when the supply chains may recover, Mr Johnson insisted a quick recovery is possible. Speaking to reporters as his plane arrived in the US, Mr Johnson said: “There are problems as you know with shipping, with containers, with staff – there are all sorts of problems.

“But then these are problems that affect the entire world.

“I think market forces will be very very swift in sorting it out.”

Supply chains have been hit hard by the pandemic, the lack of lorry drivers and a soaring global gas demand.

Mr Johnson added: “We’re experiencing bottlenecks in all kinds of things as the world wakes up from Covid.

“It’s like everybody going back to put the kettle on at the end of a TV programme, you’re seeing huge stresses on the world supply systems.

“But you’re also seeing businesses bouncing back strongly.”

“It is fundamentally caused by the global economy coming to life again.

“The guy ropes are pinging off Gulliver and it’s standing up, and it’s going to take a while, as it were, for the circulation to adjust.”

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The Prime Minister added: “As the world economy starts firing on cylinders — to use a hydrocarbon metaphor — things will start to smooth out.

“I have no doubt that supply issues will be readily addressed.

“We’re very confident in our supply chains.

“But in the meantime, we will make sure we work with all the gas companies to do whatever we can to keep people’s supplies coming, to make sure they don’t go out for business, and to make sure we get through the current difficult period.”

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Business insiders have warned a shortage of carbon dioxide gas may impact the supply of turkeys for Christmas.

Traders need CO2 in order to slaughter livestock which it is also used for cooling systems in refrigeration purposes.

Business Secretary, Kwasi Kwarteng has also held meetings with energy industry insiders amid the rise in gas prices.

Mr Kwarteng met with regulator Ofgem, to discuss plans as prices for gas have surged by 250 percent since January.

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Despite holding meetings with gas suppliers, Mr Kwarteng insisted customers will not be hit by the hike in prices.

He said: “Our priority is to protect consumers.

“If a supplier of last resort is not possible, a special administrator would be appointed by Ofgem and the Government.

“The objective is to continue supply to customers until the company can be rescued or customers moved to new suppliers.”

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