You are steel­ing our work

Fury as Net­work Rail buy for­eign

Daily Mirror - - NEWS - BY BEN GLAZE Deputy Po­lit­i­cal Ed­i­tor ben.glaze@mir­

FOR­EIGN steel is be­ing used in a key rail project af­ter a lo­cal sup­plier was snubbed.

Net­work Rail has bought Por­tuguese re­in­forc­ing steel, or re­bar, for elec­tri­fi­ca­tion work on a bridge over the London to Cardiff line in the Welsh cap­i­tal. Yet the Celsa plant only two miles away makes re­bar.

It is the lat­est blow to the UK in­dus­try which the Mir­ror’s Save Our Steel cam­paign sup­ports.

MPs who want UK steel for public con­tracts were tipped off that metal stamped with the im­print of Por­tuguese firm Me­gasa was at the site. Labour’s Stephen Kin­nock said: “This re­ally is a kick in the teeth for steel­work­ers across Bri­tain.” Mr Kin­nock and fel­low MP Stephen Doughty wrote a protest let­ter to Net­work Rail chief Mark Carne. Net­work Rail said: “Ninety six per cent of steel we buy is Bri­tish. From time to time we may need to source spe­cial­ist steel in open com­pe­ti­tion.”

THE def­i­ni­tion of eco­nomic stu­pid­ity must be im­port­ing steel from Por­tu­gal – 1,000 miles away – for work on a rail line in South Wales, when a nearby Cardiff plant pro­duces the same metal.

And be­fore any­body blames the EU, you can bet this wouldn’t hap­pen in Ger­many, France, Italy, Spain or, dare we say, Por­tu­gal.

The Gov­ern­ment needs to show some real met­tle and com­pa­nies need to fly the flag for na­tional busi­nesses in­stead of ex­port­ing jobs.

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