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Port Talbot steelworks could be nationalised to save jobs

I understand the government is willing to consider state ownership of the steel plant in Port Talbot.

It's one of the options on the table as the government awaits a decision from the steelwork's Indian owners Tata in Mumbai.

It was not a consideration in meetings six months ago.

That indicates how far the UK's steel industry has fallen in that time - largely due to slow demand and cheap Chinese imports of steel.

A senior minister tells me the Prime Minister has told his colleagues he does not want primary steel making to disappear on his watch.

The Scottish Government recently bought two much smaller plants in Scotland and subsequently sold them on.

There are however concerns in the Treasury about the cost of any temporary nationalisation of Port Talbot - and the long term viability of steelmaking in Europe.

Tata's Steel's European division (which includes plants in the UK and the Netherlands) is losing £6 million per week.

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