Who speaks for the English steel worker ?
Tata Steel is selling its entire steel operations in the UK and 15,000 workers jobs are now at risk. This sell off will effect English steel workers just as it will effect Welsh steel workers. Whereas the Welsh have a government to fight for them, English steel workers do not even have a First Minister speaking up for them.
Stephen Morris, General Secretary of the Workers of England Union stated
“This steel crisis has been largely caused China dumping cheap steel. But what happens when English steel manufacturing is gone? China will not sell cheap steel when England can no longer produce her own steel. It is just commercial common sense for China to increase the price as they will not have any competition in England”.
He continued “The steel market in 10-15 years could be viable in England but unless it is kept going through this time, England will not benefit from its revival. The UK government has a duty to citizens to promote industrial growth but it has failed the English steel worker. Instead it is weakly accepting that English steel will close all because China is dumping cheap steel across the EU. We need an English government to protect our industries as the UK government has proved its incompetence beyond any doubt now”.
30th March 2016
Where is the English government fighting to protect English Steel industry? We have a Welsh government and a Scottish Government both wanting to broker deals to save their Industries.
Who speaks for England? The answer is that no one is specifically allocated to speak on behalf of English Steel workers. How much longer are the people of England going to be denied their rightful voice?
English Steel workers are disadvantaged because they only have the UK government speaking for them and that government is made up of Welsh and Scottish MPs. The Welsh and Scottish have a clear advantage over their English colleagues. The UK can no longer say it treats its citizens and workers equally.
Tata to sell entire UK steel operations
30th Mar 2016 National David Casey
Tata Steel has confirmed it intends to sell its entire steel operations in the UK, putting the jobs of about 15,000 workers at risk.
The Indian-owned business said its European arm has been told to explore “all options for portfolio restructuring”. The decision was made following a board meeting in Mumbai.
Unions reacted angrily to the news with Unite general secretary Len McCluskey describing it as a “very dark day for the proud communities and a proud industry which is now on the verge of extinction in this country”.
The planned disposal affects Tata’s steelmaking plant in Port Talbot, South Wales, as well as sites in Rotherham, Corby and Shotton.
A statement from the company said: “Given the severity of the funding requirement in the foreseeable future, the Tata Steel Europe Board will be advised to evaluate and implement the most feasible option in a time-bound manner.”
Tata, which bought Anglo-Dutch steelmaker Corus in 2007, blamed high manufacturing costs, market weakness and increased imports into Europe from countries like China for the decision. It added it has “extended substantial financial support” to the UK business and suffered asset impairment of more than £2bn in the last five years.
The Welsh and UK governments have now vowed to work with Tata. A joint statement from ministers said: “This is a difficult time for workers in Port Talbot and across the UK. During the review process, we remain committed to working with Tata and the unions on a long term sustainable future for British steelmaking.
“Both the Welsh and UK governments are working tirelessly to look at all viable options to keep a strong British steel industry at the heart of our manufacturing base.”
Roy Rickhuss, general secretary of the steelworkers’ trade union Community, said it was “crucial” that both the Welsh and UK governments “do all they can” to ensure a future for Tata’s remaining UK steel businesses.
He added: “We travelled to Mumbai to secure a future for steelmaking in South Wales and we are disappointed that the future remains uncertain, not just for Welsh steelworkers but for thousands more workers in Tata’s businesses elsewhere in the UK.
“However, our worst fear that Tata would announce plant closures today has not been realised. This is testament to the skills, experience and passion of UK steelworkers. They are a world class asset and now it seems other investors will have the opportunity to continue generations of world class steel production.”
In addition, Tata confirmed it remains in talks with investor Greybull Capital in relation to a sale of the UK long products business.