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Shadow Chancellor: the government must act swiftly on Tata

Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell says the government needs to act immediately to take a public stake in the steel sector in the wake of Tata's decision to sell off its UK businesses.

He says we need to work with our European partners to protect against the dumping of Chinese steel on the international market as part of a long term strategy to make the UK market viable.

Watch his full interview:

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Tata sell off: Middlesbrough MP statement

Middlesbrough MP Andy McDonald (Labour)

The Government have had more than enough notice of this and must now step in with measures to ensure the survival of our steel industry to include, if necessary, taking a government stake in a successor business structure.

While it is too late for The SSI plant at Redcar, the government must intervene to continue steel production in Port Talbot and secure the thousands of TATA Steel jobs on Teesside again under threat.

They should also be making sure that the MPI and TWI ‘metals catapult project’ based in South Bank and Middlesbrough receives the necessary support as innovation, research and development are all key to a thriving and sustainable steel industry.

The demand for steel will be immense in the coming years with our national infrastructure projects to include HS2. Such projects ought to be using the best in the world made right here in Britain.

The Government should wake up. There is a crisis and up to 40,000 jobs are at risk. David Cameron is wrong not to have heeded Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn’s demand that parliament be recalled to deal with the problem.

Neither is it acceptable for the Secretary of State, Sajid Javed, to block an EU rule change that would help stem the flood of cheap Chinese steel. Despite all the warm words we hear from Ministers this government seem determined to bring one of the UK’s core industries to its knees.

Just sitting on their hands letting the markets decide everything is not in the interests of British business or British workers. It's high time this Government had an industrial strategy. It is patently clear that market failures do not correct themselves and the UK’s industrial future must not be left to chance.

As I have called for on many occasions, the government must play an active role and produce a plan for skills, innovation, productivity and competitiveness as well as use their powers to protect UK manufacturing and supply chains.

– Middlesbrough MP Andy McDonald (Labour)
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Union urges PM take 'personal responsibility' for steel crisis

Unite has urged Cameron to head up a Credit: Yui Mok/PA

Workers union Unite has urged Prime Minister David Cameron to take 'personal responsibility' for the steel crisis.

Speaking on BBC Radio 4's Today show Unite general secretary Len McCluskey said it was time for No 10 to "protect our industry" and a steel "taskforce" should be set up with the PM at its head.

He said: "This is an industrial crisis of enormous proportions, not just affecting the 40, 50 or 60,000 jobs, but indeed affecting the whole of our manufacturing base.

" I want the Government to protect our industry. I don't care what semantics we talk but I also want a message sent out to Tata, don't be thinking that this is going to be a fire sale and you're going to disappear in three or four weeks.

"Let's set up a steel taskforce with the Prime Minister at its head."

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Steel crisis: Parliament recall petition hits 100,000

The petition has more than 100,000 signatures Credit: UK Parliament

A petition, urging the Prime Minister to recall parliament to discuss the UK steel crisis has attracted more than 100,000 signatures.

The call to action was set up by Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn as the industry crisis escalated in the wake of Tata Steel's decision to sell off its UK assets.

The petition, which has only been live for one day, has now exceeded the number of signatures needed to be considered for a debate in parliament.

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PM: Government 'doing everything it can' but 'no guarantees'

Prime Minister David Cameron has said the government is "doing everything it can" to try to secure the future of steel making in Port Talbot and elsewhere in the UK but has warned "there can be no guarantees of success".

Speaking following an emergency steel crisis meeting to discuss the future of the industry after Tata Steel said it was selling off its UK assets he said the focus was now on finding a buyer.

After the meeting Cameron also tweeted that workers and their families would remain a "priority" while trying to find a solution to the current steel industry crisis.

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PM: Nationalisation not the answer to steel crisis

Prime Minister David Cameron has said the Government is "doing everything it can" to resolve the steel crisis but nationalisation is not the right answer.

Stating that the situation at Port Talbot was of "deep concern" he admitted he wasn't ruling nationalisation out but he did not believe it was the answer.

The situation at Port Talbot is of deep concern.

I know how important those jobs are, those jobs are vital to workers families, vital to those communities and the Government will do everything it can working with the company to try and secure the future of steel working in Port Talbot and across our country. It's a vital industry.

Not ruling anything out, I don't believe nationalisation is the right answer what we want to do is secure a long term future for Port Talbot and for other steel making plants in the United Kingdom.

– PM David Cameron
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David Cameron to chair steel crisis meeting

The prime minister will chair a meeting in Downing Street to discuss the crisis gripping the steel industry amid growing fears of huge job losses.

The government is facing criticism over its response to a shock move by Tata to sell its UK assets.

The PM will chair a meeting to discuss the steel crisis

Around 40,000 jobs could be lost if no buyer is found for Tata Steel's UK business, according to analysis by the IPPR think tank.

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said he was "shocked " that business secretary Sajid Javid did not believe nationalising the industry could be the solution.

The Government turned down calls from the Labour Party to recall Parliament.

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Tata faced 'very agonising decision' to stop supporting steelworks

The decision to no longer support its steelworks was a "very agonising decision" but one that had to be made in light of the current industry climate, according to a top Tata Steel executive.

Koushik Chatterjee, Tata's Group Finance and Corporate Executive Director, said the decision was made as a result of the insurmountable "challenges" facing the industry today.

Workers of the UK have put in a lot of heart and soul behind the effort to turn around the business but fundamentally the externalities and the adversities today in the global steel industry are far to high.

Given the kind of overcapacity that is being faced by the world in the steel industry the core structure and the long-term competitive position - it was a very agonising decision but we had to come to a conclusion.

– Koushik Chatterjee, Tata Steel Executive

Chatterjee added that Tata would continue to talk to the government and other stakeholders to see how production plants could continue without them but admitted they did not yet know what viable option would be found.

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