Speaking after the national steel summit at the Advanced Manufacturing Park in Rotherham on Friday (October 16), John Healey, MP for Wentworth & Dearne – home of Tata’s Aldwarke steel plant – said:
“The UK steel industry is in crisis.
“I hope we can reduce the scale of steel job losses to come in Rotherham, but the 1200 Scunthorpe job cuts announced by Tata today is the latest sign of this serious crisis.
“The national steel summit in Rotherham on Friday, attended by industry CEOs, trade unions and MPs from all parties across the UK, set out for ministers a five-point action plan on what they can do now to back British steel for the future:
1. Implement now – not next year – the energy intensive industry compensation package
2. Back action on anti-dumping measures, which support UK steel against the rapid rise in global imports
3. Bring business rates for capital intensive firms in line with competitors in France and Germany
4. Don’t make fresh regulations, like those on industrial emissions, unfairly complex and hard to meet
5. Use British steel in major construction projects – including HS2
“The Government have no industrial strategy and have failed to act or invest for the future. We’ve seen the results of this failure in the collapse of the solar industry and crisis in steel.
“The responsibility to act rests squarely with George Osborne, and the test for him and the government now is to announce the action needed in the Autumn Statement next month.
“David Cameron and George Osborne are sucking up to the Chinese this week when they should be standing up for British jobs and our economy.
“In contrast, Labour’s leader Jeremy Corbyn will challenge the Chinese leaders on steel dumping when he meets them this week.”