Time is ticking on the UK’s steel industry and urgent action from the government is needed, not platitudes, warned Britain’s largest union, Unite following today’s (Friday 16 October) steel summit in Rotherham.
Commenting on the summit and rumoured job losses at Tata Steel’s long products division, Unite assistant general secretary Tony Burke said: “This news heaps further uncertainty on the steel industry and all those whose livelihoods depend on it. We will be consulting urgently with Tata over potential job losses and will leave no stone unturned in protecting our members’ jobs and steel making in the UK.
“Time is ticking on the UK’s steel industry and the news of yet more job losses should jolt the government out of its laissez faire approach to this vital part of the UK economy. Now is not the time for platitudes from government ministers, we need urgent action to support steelmaking in the UK.
“If the government is serious about rebalancing the economy then it needs to take action against the dumping of cheap Chinese imports and support an industry which is being hammered by high energy costs.
“Ministers also need to develop an industrial strategy and ensure major infrastructure projects, such as HS2, use British steel so that steelmaking and manufacturing communities here in the UK reap the benefits of such investment.”
For further information please contact Unite head of media and campaigns Alex Flynn on 020 3371 2066 or 07967 665869.
Notes to editors:
Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest trade union with over 1.4 million members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.