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  1. ImALittleTeaPot's Avatar
    The government is considering "all options" for Tata's Port Talbot steel plant, UK Business Minister Anna Soubry has told the BBC.
    She wants the company to take enough time to find a buyer for the plant. Failing that, other options being considered include government support.
    But she stressed that the UK had to work within EU rules over state aid.
    Tata Steel said it could not give an "open ended" commitment to keep the UK plants open while a buyer was sought.
    Late on Tuesday, after a board meeting in Mumbai, Tata Group said it planned to sell the UK steel business, putting thousands of jobs at risk.
    The Welsh Assembly has been recalled to discuss the crisis, and Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has called for Parliament to be recalled.
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    Koushik Chatterjee, a group executive director of Tata Steel, told the BBC, the company wanted to move quickly to secure that sale.
    He said Tata must cut its losses in the UK, where it had lost 2bn in five years, and the sale price was not the most important issue: "It [Tata's UK steel business] has become quite a burden for the company. It is not a valuation exercise, it is an exposure exercise.
    "The view the board took finally was we can't sustain this kind of exposure. So it's not about the bid being low or high. It's about some one being willing to buy the business."
    Port TalbotImage copyrightGetty Images
    Tata's European holding company has been told to "explore all options for restructuring" the UK steel business.
    The decision, which was announced after a board meeting in Mumbai on Tuesday, also affects workers at its other UK plants, including Rotherham, Corby and Shotton. There has been no specific mention of these plants from the government.
    Tata's Scunthorpe plant is in the process of being bought, and last week a deal was agreed to sell its two plants in Scotland.
    One option for Port Talbot, which is the UK's biggest steel plant, would be a management buy-out.
    Sources say that unions and management at Tata Steel have already come up with with a turnaround plan for the 100-year old plant.
    Tata Steel's Scunthorpe siteImage copyrightPA
    Analysis: Kamal Ahmed, BBC economics editor
    What China does in steel exports is vital to the UK steel industry - especially "long products", the lower technology steel output that is used by the car industry, building sector and transport.
    For some perspective, in 2013 China produced nearly 800 million tonnes of steel.
    The UK produced 12 million tonnes - and steel production now makes up just 1% of Britain's manufacturing output and 0.1% of all the UK's economic output.
    The value of the industry to the UK economy has fallen by a quarter since 1990.
    If China sneezes in steel, the UK does not so much catch a cold as pneumonia.
    2016-03-30 02:18 PM
  2. Albut's Avatar
    The UK government is severely restricted by EU rules. Until it leaves the EU this type of incident is virtually impossible to fully retrieve due to being governed from a foreign source. The only way to have full control over such incidents is to have full control over your country. The only way for UK to get that is for the people to vote to leave.
    2016-03-30 07:38 PM
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