Job losses from collapse of British Steel could top 32,000, study says
Total number of jobs losses from the collapse of British Steel could top 32,000, new study reveals
- British Steel went into compulsory liquidation in May after loss of funding
- Government refused to bail it out despite warnings of ‘economic catastrophe’
- GMB Union says collapse of British Steel threatens jobs throughout supply chain
- Bosses at GMB’s Brighton annual conference urged the government to do more
The total number of job losses from the collapse of British Steel could soar to 32,000, thousands more than had been feared, a new study reveals.
The GMB union said that as well as the thousands directly employed, another 28,395 throughout the supply chain were on the brink.
Previous estimates had put the number of jobs at risk at 25,000 but the new analysis revealed at the union’s annual conference in Brighton put the figure far higher.
British Steel went into compulsory liquidation in May after the government refused to bail out the company with another £30 million, having already staked £120 million.
Workers are pictured leaving the steelworks plant in Scunthorpe in May following the announcement that it had collapsed
A worker leaves British Steel’s Scunthorpe plant in May as the firm announced it was collapsing following the government saying it couldn’t grant a loan to the company
Furious workers were turned away from factories in Scunthorpe, North Lincolnshire, and Teesside, their livelihoods hanging in the balance.
Business secretary Greg Clark said the Government’s hands were tied by EU law which makes state aid of companies illegal.
GMB Union’s national officer Ross Murdoch said: ‘There are more than 30,000 jobs at stake at British Steel, directly and through the supply chain. It’s much worse than had been feared.
‘GMB members are showing today that the fight for jobs at British Steel is a fight our whole union will get behind.
‘There is outrage across the country at the prospect of indispensable foundation industries like British Steel going to the wall, while the Government simply sits on its hands.
‘The UK has lost almost half a million manufacturing jobs in the last decade and while the Tory Party leadership candidates debate how much they want to cut the taxes of the richest, our members are looking at a bleak and uncertain future.
‘A continuing decline in manufacturing is not inevitable, but we need action to protect the skilled, well-paid jobs our proud industries can provide and support.’
This graph shows the overall decline in Britain’s production of crude steel from 1996 to 2016
British Steel went into compulsory liquidation in May after the government refused to bail out the company with another £30 million, having already staked £120 million
Labour and union officials have stated the steel manufacturer should be nationalized.
Unite assistant general secretary Steve Turner said previously that ‘it would be an economic catastrophe if the worst were to happen and Government was to allow British Steel to collapse’.
Brexiteers said the firm’s collapse showed the importance of the UK leaving the EU so it is free from Europe’s competition rules.
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