BRITISH STEEL: TORY BREXIT OBSESSION JEOPARDISING JOBS AND BUSINESSES

21st May 2019

SNP CALL ON TORIES TO FOLLOW SCOT GOVT LEAD AND ACT TO PROTECT VITAL STEEL INDUSTRY

The SNP has warned that the Tories damaging Brexit obsession and failure to get on with the day job is actively jeopardising businesses and putting at risk thousands of jobs, following reports that the UK’s second largest steel producer is on the brink of collapse.

British Steel faces the prospect of calling in administrators today unless the Tory government accepts its request for a £30million emergency loan after citing “Brexit-related issues”.

The firm has a workforce of around 5,000 people as well as supporting a further estimated 20,000 jobs in its supply chain. The impact of a potential collapse could also have a knock on effect on steel businesses in Scotland.

Leading on an Urgent Question on British Steel in Westminster today, SNP MP Marion Fellows called on the Tory government to follow the lead of the SNP Scottish Government to step in and provide support for the steel industry and to protect the thousands of jobs that are on the line.

Commenting, Marion Fellows MP said:

“The reports surrounding the future of British Steel are deeply concerning and it is vital that the Tory government urgently steps in to provide the emergency financial support being requested by the firm.

“Thousands of jobs are on the line, the Tory government cannot sit idly by. It must act now.

“With British Steel citing Brexit-related issues, it is clear that the Tories’ obsession with Brexit and failure to get on with the day job is actively jeopardising jobs and businesses.

“In stark contrast to the chaos consuming the Tories, when Scotland’s steel plants faced closure the SNP Scottish Government took decisive action to secure a new owner, and the steelworks at Dalzell and Clydebridge have reopened.

“The Scottish Government has already proven its commitment to steel after successfully securing its future in Scotland, and now we need to see action from the UK government to show that it cares about this vital industry.

“Rather than standing up for Scotland’s interests – or the interests of industries across the UK – it’s clear that the Tories are only interested in infighting and petty leadership battles.

“Time and time again, warnings from businesses over the damaging impact of Brexit have been ignored and throughout the entire Brexit process Scotland’s voice and interests have also been ignored.

“The SNP’s focus this Thursday in the European elections is on protecting Scotland’s interests. A vote for the SNP is a vote to make clear Scotland says No to Brexit.”E