Action group prepares to save city’s Michelin site
Future: Economy secretary aiming to come up with alternative to closure
Politicians, business leaders and trade unions will join forces in a bid to save the closure-threatened Michelin tyre factory in Dundee.
The Scottish Government has announced details of the action group being set up to look at alternative futures for the plant and its 845 workers.
It will be led by Dundee City Council leader John Alexander and Steve Dunlop, chief executive of Scottish Enterprise, with both Scottish Finance and
“They are at least giving me a hearing in about three weeks”
Economy Secretary Derek Mackay and Secretary of State for Scotland David Mundell also involved, as well as John Reid, director of Dundee’s Michelin site.
It comes after First Minister Nicola Sturgeon pledged Scottish ministers would “leave no stone unturned” in the efforts to secure a “positive future” for the factory.
Michelin’s announcement that the site is to be closed in less than two years was “devastating”, she said, adding that her thoughts were with the staff and their families.
The France-based tyre firm has given Mr Mackay three weeks to come up with an alternative to closure.
“They, whilst not wanting to revisit the decision, are at least giving me a hearing in about three weeks’ time so I can put that offer to them,” he said.
The Michelin action group has been tasked with developing the response and will meet on Monday.
It also includes senior figures from Unite trade union, business leaders, including Dundee Chamber of Commerce chief executive Alison Henderson, and Damien Yeates, head of skills and training body Skills Development Scotland.
The group will also seek expert advice from manufacturing leaders including Dr Hamid Mughal, co-chair of the strategic leadership group of the National Manufacturing Institute for Scotland.
Mr Alexander stated: “It is imperative the membership of the action group reflects stakeholders, experience and those with an ability to find solutions. I’m delighted to say that I believe those identified do just that.
Michelin said earlier this week its Dundee plant, which opened in 1972, is due to cease operations by mid-2020.
Scottish Labour leader Richard Leonard called for the UK Government to commit an extra £50 million to the Tay Cities deal for the Dundee area.
EXPERTS: The Michelin action group has now been tasked with developing a response and will meet for the first time on Monday