This petition was submitted during the 2015–2017 Conservative government

Petition Save British Steel making. Scunthorpe, Teesside, Port Talbot etc.

I'm from Scunthorpe. I work for Tata Steel at the BOS Plant. If Scunthorpe steel works was to close its doors, Scunthorpe would be a ghost town. Scunthorpe steel works employs thousands of people: Tata employees, contractors, IE Construction, security, cleaners.

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Parliament debated this topic

This topic was debated on 28 October 2015

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Government responded

This response was given on 16 March 2016

The Government is determined to ensure a viable future for the Scunthorpe plant and the UK steel industry by acting on cheap imports, energy costs, procurement, and emissions regulations.

Read the response in full

The UK steel sector is facing unparalleled global economic conditions. The price of some steel products has halved and the world is producing more steel than it needs. This has led to many companies having to take difficult commercial decisions including redundancies across Tata UK and Sheffield Forgemasters and the closure of the SSI steel plant in Teeside.

Throughout this crisis, the Government has worked intensively and pro-actively with the sector to support the UK’s steel industry. On 16th October 2015 we hosted a Steel Summit in order to discuss how best to proceed with key Government and industry participants as well as constituency MPs, recognising the significant part steel companies play in local communities. Since then, and through the efforts of three ministerially chaired Working Groups, the Government has been unceasing in its efforts to deliver on the five key ‘Asks’ put to us by our partners in the steel industry:
1. Lower energy costs: on 14 December the Government received State Aid approval to pay compensation to Energy Intensive Industries including steel from renewable policy costs. This will save the industry hundreds of millions of pounds. We will now go further and exempt Energy Intensive Industries from these costs.

2. Flexibility over EU Emissions Regulations: we have now provided the industry with longer lead-in time for compliance with EU Regulations. This will save companies millions of pounds.

3. Support for UK steel in major construction projects: we have published and further updated procurement guidance for government departments to allow aspects such as social impacts, job impacts and staff safety to be taken into account when procuring steel for major projects. This will give UK steel back its competitive edge.

4. EU and international level action on unfair trading practices: the UK voted in favour of certain steel anti-dumping measures, such as recently on the import of Chinese wire rod and steel tubing products. The UK also lobbied successfully for an investigation into cheap imports of reinforcing steel bars. The Prime Minister raised the problems of Chinese overproduction directly with President Xi on his visit to the UK.

5. Business Rates: the sector’s concerns about the impact of business rates on competitiveness are taken into account in the Government’s Business Rates Review. This will conclude by Budget 2016. We have also already reduced taxes and increased investment allowances.

It is encouraging that Tata have entered exclusive negotiations with Greybull capital regarding the sale of their Long Products business. We have offered our assistance to Tata and will remain in close contact as these commercial negotiations continue.

The Government recognises that this is also a difficult time for the individuals and communities affected by the current crisis. Our immediate focus is to help those who have lost their jobs back into work as quickly as possible. We have set up taskforces in Scunthorpe and Redcar, and have put in place support packages of up to £90m.

In particular, in Scunthorpe, we put in place a support package of up to £9 million, to support the local economy and employees affected by the job losses in Scunthorpe:
• Tata has pledged £3 million to support job;
• the Government is funding £3m to help start-up businesses and companies looking to grow and create jobs; and
• The Government is providing £3 million, the full cost of retraining former Tata workers, and others made redundant in the supply chain, at local education colleges.

We have also set up a taskforce, chaired by Baroness Liz Redfern to co-ordinate the response and consider what further steps are needed.

We are also working closely with the Welsh and Scottish Government to support their own taskforces and determine how we can best support their efforts.

Whilst this crisis continues there is more that can and must be done. The Government will therefore continue to do all it can in the coming weeks and months to ensure a healthy and sustainable future for UK steel.

Department of Business, Innovation and Skills

Other parliamentary business

MPs hear evidence on the UK Steel Industry

The Business, Innovation and Skills Committee will be holding an evidence session on the UK Steel Industry on Tuesday 27 October at 4.10pm.

You can find out more about the session, including how to watch it, here:

http://www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/commons-select/business-innovation-and-skills/news-parliament-2015/evidence-on-the-uk-steel-industry-15-16/

Ahead of the session, Iain Wright MP, Chair of the BIS Committee said:

"'The UK’s steel industry has been dealt a series of major blows in recent weeks and months. It is facing terminal decline, even though it is an essential foundation for other parts of our economy like aerospace, construction and automotives. As a Committee we will be pressing the Government to explain what action it is taking now to help the steel industry through this crisis and its plans to support the industry as part of a competitive and dynamic manufacturing sector in the long term."

Government statement on the steel sector

The Minister for Small Business, Industry and Enterprise, Anna Soubry, made a statement to the House of Commons on the steel sector on 18 January 2015.

You can watch the statement and questions from MPs here: http://goo.gl/6KEa3j

You can read the transcript of the statement and questions from MPs here: http://goo.gl/zd5dlp

You can follow the House of Commons on Twitter: @HouseofCommons

Backbench business debate on the UK steel industry

On Thursday 21 January, MPs debated the future of the UK steel industry. This debate was scheduled by the Backbench Business Committee following a bid from Stephen Kinnock MP, Anna Turley MP and Tom Blenkinsop MP.

You can watch the debate here: http://goo.gl/gn2kF8

You can read the transcript here: http://goo.gl/t62rc6

You can follow the House of Commons on Twitter: @HouseofCommons

MPs debate the UK steel industry

On Monday 29 February, the House of Commons debated the UK steel industry.

You can watch the debate here: http://parliamentlive.tv/event/index/bd58e181-99d8-462e-b335-de8c85e0c5e4?in=18:57:51

You can read the transcript here: https://hansard.digiminster.com/commons/2016-02-29/debates/16022928000001/UKSteelIndustry

The subject for this debate was chosen by the Official Opposition (Labour). There are 20 days allocated each year for non-government (opposition) parties to choose the subjects of debate in the House of Commons.

You can follow the House of Commons on Twitter here: @HouseofCommons

There are other ways you can get involved in the work of the UK Parliament.

Find out how to contact your MP or a Lord, contribute to a Parliamentary Committee, and search for free Parliament events taking place in your local area here: http://www.parliament.uk/get-involved/

Find out how you can visit Parliament: http://www.parliament.uk/visiting/

You can find out more about the work of the Petitions Committee on its website here: www.parliament.uk/petitions-committee

You can follow the Petitions Committee on Twitter: @hocpetitions

Recent parliamentary business on the steel industry

On Monday 11 April, the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, Sajid Javid MP, made a statement to the House of Commons on the UK steel industry and was questioned by MPs about it.

You can watch the debate here: http://parliamentlive.tv/event/index/b7fe1d16-a671-4d1f-aab4-f1e442156545?in=17:01:30

You can read the transcript here: http://hansard.parliament.uk/commons/2016-04-11/debates/1604116000001/UKSteelIndustry

On Tuesday 12 April, the House of Commons held an urgent debate on the UK Steel Industry.

You can watch the debate here: http://parliamentlive.tv/event/index/d1cd4828-eacb-4afe-b313-9e9c4d63d2e8?in=12:51:40

You can read the transcript here: https://hansard.digiminster.com/commons/2016-04-12/debates/16041234000002/UKSteelIndustry

Also on Tuesday 12 April, the House of Commons Welsh Affairs Committee, which is investigating the steel industry in Wales, questioned the Minister of State for Small Business, Industry and Enterprise, Anna Soubry MP about the future of steel production in Port Talbot.

You can find out more and watch the session on the Welsh Affairs Committee website: http://www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/commons-select/welsh-affairs-committee/news-parliament-2015/anna-soubry-steel-crisis-evidence-15-16/

You can follow the Welsh Affairs Committee on Twitter: @CommonsWelshAff

There are other ways you can get involved in the work of the UK Parliament.

Find out how to contact your MP or a Lord, contribute to a Parliamentary Committee, and search for free Parliament events taking place in your local area here: http://www.parliament.uk/get-involved/

Find out how you can visit Parliament: http://www.parliament.uk/visiting/

You can find out more about the work of the Petitions Committee on its website here: www.parliament.uk/petitions-committee

You can follow the Petitions Committee on Twitter: @HoCpetitions