MP for Corby and East Northants Tom Pursglove says he will be doing “all he can” to help those affected by the latest Tata Steel job cuts.
Yesterday (Monday) it was announced that the steel makers would lose 1,050 staff across the country, with 30 of those expected to lose their jobs at the Corby plant.
The news highlights the ongoing UK steel crisis - and Mr Pursglove says he will do his best to support the industry.
He said: “At my visit to Tata Steel in Corby a few months ago I really enjoyed meeting the skilled workforce and seeing the production of such high quality steel tubes, and was saddened to hear that more steelworkers are facing uncertain times, with the announcement of 30 job losses at the Corby site.
“The reality is that there is no ‘silver bullet’ solution for our steel industry, but the Government must redouble its efforts to address the main issues, including Chinese ‘dumping’ on the European market, business rates and energy costs.
“The European Union must also step up to the plate, take a strong line with China and expedite the investigations into ‘dumping’ activities – a point I made today on the floor of the House of Commons.
“All of this must happen, and soon, if we want to see the UK steel industry survive and prosper in the future – indeed, I have long maintained that a sustainable steel industry is crucial to our national security.
“In recent weeks we have seen positive steps taken, such as in the Autumn Statement, where the Chancellor announced that the steel industry was to be exempted from carbon taxes and levies.
“However, as I have long maintained, monies owed during the previous scheme must be paid over as soon as possible, after the delays in securing EU State Aid clearance.
“As the Member of Parliament for Corby and East Northamptonshire, I have been very vocal on this since my election last May and will continue to do all I can to raise the issues facing our steel industry, privately with Ministers, and on the floor of the House of Commons.
“I will also be doing everything I can to support those individuals affected by the job losses, and my thoughts are with them and their families at this very difficult time.”
Conservative MEP Emma McClarkin said: “The latest news about even further job cuts in the UK steel industry is devastating, and now directly affects my region, in Corby.
“Since the beginning of this steel crisis I have continued to reiterate to the European Commission that it must speed up the processing of applying anti-dumping measures.
“The EU is simply too slow to act in these instances.
“The EU must act now; while it delays, industries are disappearing.
“Workers in Corby are now facing an uncertain future, but I will continue putting pressure on the European Commission to take action so that we can save our steel industry and minimise the risk to UK jobs in the future.”