LIZ Truss responded to criticism about her Chancellor’s disastrous mini-budget by urging Scotland to build more nuclear power stations and help get more gas out of the North Sea.

SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford slammed Truss’s economic plan at Prime Minister’s Questions, outlining how it had sent interest rates through the roof with some families seeing their mortgage payments go up by around £450 a month.

As a result, Blackford asked the PM if she would now give up her “desperate” plan to save her Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng by scapegoating the Bank of England.

But she dodged the question entirely, and instead urged Scotland to get behind her plan by building more expensive nuclear power stations to “help our energy security”.

Blackford told the House: "When the Prime Minister last stood at the despatch box the average two-year fixed mortgage stood at 4.5%.

“They are now at 6.5% and rising, hitting average families with an extra £450 a month of mortgage payments.

“Thirty-seven days into the job, this is the cost of the Prime Minister’s incompetence.

“It is the price households are paying and all because of the Chancellor she chose. Will she now give up her desperate plan to save her Chancellor’s skin by scapegoating the governor of the Bank of England?”

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Truss replied: “The action we have taken has meant families in Scotland and across the UK are not facing gargantuan energy bills.

“What the honourable gentleman and his friends in Scotland could do to help us out is build the nuclear power stations that are going to help our energy security, and help us get more gas out of the North Sea.”

Blackford suggested that if Truss wanted to ask him questions, they could switch places.

He accused her of ignoring the damage she was inflicting on the economy, which along with lofty interest rates has led to the collapse of the pound and the near-collapse of pension funds.

On Wednesday morning, it emerged the UK economy shrunk by 0.3% in August, according to the Office for National Statistics. 

Blackford added: "The Prime Minister is ignoring the damage of the mini-Budget.

"She is worried about saving the Chancellor’s job. Many families are not just worried about heating their homes, they are worried about keeping their homes.

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"The scale of this Tory crisis is frightening.

"People can't afford to pay an extra £4500-a-year in interest. The Prime Minister and her Chancellor have completely lost control.

"The only things growing under this government are mortgages, rents, and bills. Is that what she meant when she declared herself a pro-growth Prime Minister?"

Truss said: "We have taken action on helping families heat their homes and that’s been very important, and I would love to see more support on delivering the energy security we need.

"I want to do all I can for families across Britain. The way we are going to help them is by delivering economic growth by making sure we have the jobs and opportunities in Scotland and across the UK."