Boris Johnson will not intervene in the cost of living crisis this summer, Downing Street has said.
The prime minister’s official spokesman said it was up to his successor to make policy and he would not make “major fiscal interventions”.
It means another four weeks of paralysis until the next prime minister is announced on September 5.
Former Labour prime minister Gordon Brown claimed there is a “vacuum” at the centre of government which has stopped it tackling the cost of living crisis.
He has called on the UK government’s emergency response committee, Cobra, to come together to tackle the looming crisis.
Brown warned that the country was facing a “poverty time bomb” and added: “Even if Boris Johnson has gone on holiday, his deputies should be negotiating to buy new oil and gas supplies from other countries and urgently creating the extra storage capacity we currently lack.
“We should be persuading homes and buildings - as Germany is now doing - to cut back on energy usage wherever possible in the hope we can prevent formal rationing.”
But Downing Street rejected his calls saying they introduced a number of measures to help the public at the start of the summer.
The prime minister’s official spokesman said Johnson - who is back in No.10 following his holiday in Slovenia - would be speaking to chancellor Nadhim Zahawi to ensure that support measures due to come into effect later in the year remained on track.
However, the spokesman said that any further measures would be a matter for the next prime minister.
“Clearly these global pressures mean challenging times for the public. The government recognised that the end of the year will present wider challenges with things like changes to the [energy] price cap,” the spokesman said.
“That is why, at the start of the summer, we introduced a number of measures to help the public. Clearly some of the global pressures have increased since that was announced.
“By convention it is not for this prime minister to make major fiscal interventions during this period. It will be for a future prime minister.”
The prime minister returned from his holiday today after facing accusations he had been “missing in action” while the UK was mired in political and economic crisis.
The Labour Party has attacked the prime minister for presiding over a “zombie government” just as the Bank of England warned of a looming recession and energy bills are expected to rise to almost £4,000 in October.
According to The Telegraph Johnson and his wife Carrie stayed at an eco-hotel in Jezersko in the remote Kokra Valley in Slovenia following their delayed wedding celebration.
The Vila Planinka, where rooms range from £242 to £542 per night, is a five-star boutique hotel which promises guests they will “slow down, harmonising your rhythm with your inner balance”.
Rachel Reeves MP, Labour’s shadow chancellor, said: “People are worried sick about how they’ll pay their bills and do their weekly food shop, and all this Tory prime minister does is shrug his shoulders.
“An economic crisis like this requires strong leadership and urgent action - but instead we have a Tory party that’s lost control and are stuck with two continuity candidates who can only offer more of the same.
“Labour would start by scrapping tax breaks on oil and gas producers and providing more help to people who are struggling to pay their energy bills. Only a Labour government can tackle this crisis and deliver the stronger, more-secure economy that Britain needs.”