Ms McLaughlin said that the statement, claiming to provide an update on action taken by the Minister, contains not one idea deployable by the Department for the Economy to help people or businesses affected by soaring energy costs.
Said the Foyle MLA: “The Economy Minister’s ‘do nothing’ strategy in the face of the most severe household and small business cost crisis in recent memory is an astounding abdication of responsibility.
“The ‘update’ produced by the Minister is eight pages of excuses for his failure to take action prompted in large part by his party’s failure to take government seriously.
“Political rebuttal won’t help businesses facing closure because they can’t afford to keep the lights on.
“Everywhere else, government is putting its shoulder to the wheel to design bespoke support packages to help people and job creators get through this crisis.
“In Northern Ireland, Ministers are too busy getting excuses and political digs in to their opponents.
“Gordon Lyons should urgently outline what interventions he has instructed officials to prepare to support businesses and workers over the autumn and winter.
“He has political power; his department has spending power.
“It is about time he got to grips with this crisis and used them.”