1st June 2018


Marion Fellows, SNP MP for Motherwell and Wishaw, has called on the UK Government to “stand up for steel” after Trump imposes a 25% tax on steel from the EU.

Trump has applied tariffs to stop Chinese steel from undercutting domestic manufacturers and after the EU failed to negotiate a deal with the USA before the 1st of June deadline.

UK Steel says that around 7% of its exports are sent to the US. Plate steel, like that produced in Scotland’s last remaining steelworks at Dalzell in Motherwell, is likely to be impacted.

Mrs Fellows fears tariffs will risk jobs in Scotland and across the UK and has called on the Prime Minister follow the Scottish Government’s lead and take action to protect and grow the sector in light of Trump’s tariffs.

Commenting, Mrs Fellows said:

Trump’s decision to impose tariffs on steel imports from the EU will hurt the sector here in Scotland and across the UK.

He is attempting to block highly subsidised Chinese steel from undercutting domestic businesses – and we should seek to do this also – but it makes no sense to cut off steel manufacturers here in Scotland.

This is yet another blow to Theresa May and her supposed ‘special relationship’ with the USA. Her attempts to cosy up with right wing Trump have made the UK look weak and desperate. Her hopes of preferential treatment post-Brexit are shattered.

The Scottish Government has already proven its commitment to steel after successfully securing Dalzell’s future. We need the UK Government to show that it cares about manufacturing jobs just as much as it cares about banking.

It will not do to allow the market to simply sort this out. The PM must stand up for steel and protect and grow the sector by using domestic steel in public contracts and providing further support to reduce energy prices and costs for domestic manufacturers.