Steel lat­est

Rutherglen Reformer - - Front Page - Dou­glas Dickie

Trade union chiefs are seek­ing show­down talks with the new own­ers of the Cly­de­bridge steel­works.

A deal that will see in­ter­na­tional met­als firm, Lib­erty House, take over the moth­balled fa­cil­ity was con­firmed last week.

Trade union chiefs have called for ur­gent talks with the new own­ers of Cly­de­bridge steel plant.

It was con­firmed last Thurs­day, March 24, that a deal had been struck to save the moth­balled fa­cil­ity.

The Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment agreed to buy the plant for £1 from pre­vi­ous own­ers Tata be­fore im­me­di­ately sell­ing it for the same price to in­ter­na­tional met­als firm, Lib­erty House.

Al­though some as­pects of the deal have still to be signed, the road is now clear for the plant to re­open.

The news was hailed as a ma­jor vic­tory for the Scot­tish steel task force, which in­cluded rep­re­sen­ta­tives from both the UK and Scot­tish gov­ern­ments and South La­nark­shire Coun­cil.

But Com­mu­nity union were this week urg­ing cau­tion un­til a more de­tailed busi­ness plan had been put to­gether.

A spokesman for the union told the Re­former there were still ques­tion marks over how many of the 45 staff laid off last year would be re-em­ployed.

He added: “We are seek­ing to meet with Lib­erty as soon as pos­si­ble to find out what their plans for the plant are and what jobs will be kept.

“There are no guar­an­tees at this mo­ment, we will need to have a bet­ter un­der­stand­ing of what is hap­pen­ing.

“We have been con­tacted by hun­dreds of mem­bers. Ev­ery­one is pleased about the news but it’s now just a case of wait­ing to see what the re­sponse from the com­pany is.”

The Re­former un­der­stands Lib­erty are still some weeks away from de­cid­ing the best fu­ture for the plant.

San­jeev Gupta, Lib­erty’s ex­ec­u­tive chair­man, vis­ited the Dalzell plant last week af­ter news of the deal was con­firmed.

He said: “We must turn our at­ten­tion to restor­ing these busi­nesses to their for­mer glory, steadily re­build­ing their skilled work­forces and cus­tomer base.

“Cly­de­bridge and Dalzell will fit well into our vision for an in­te­grated, flex­i­ble and sus­tain­able steel sec­tor, from re­cy­cled lo­cal scrap us­ing re­new­able en­ergy- mak­ing green steel to value added down­stream and en­gi­neered prod­ucts.”

Ruther­glen and Hamil­ton West MP, Mar­garet Fer­rier, hailed the news, say­ing: “I am ab­so­lutely de­lighted that a deal to save our steel in­dus­try has been sealed – bring­ing to an end months of an­guish and un­cer­tainty for work­ers in Cam­bus­lang.

“The ef­forts of the Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment, trade unions, the work­force and the com­pa­nies them­selves have paid off – and I would like to per­son­ally thank all of those in­volved.

“I also want to thank busi­ness min­is­ter Fer­gus Ewing who has led the Scot­tish steel task force over the last few months, as we re­solved a num­ber of is­sues which have helped make the deal pos­si­ble.”

Good news Mar­garet Fer­rier MP wel­comed the news of Cly­de­bridge be­ing saved

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