Business secretary Sajid Javid seeks urgent EU deal for UK steel

Industry blames cheap Chinese imports for collapse

Steel foundry furnace in China

A steel plant in China. Chinese imports are impacting the UK steel industry, it is claimed

Business secretary Sajid Javid has called for emergency talks with the EU to demand action on the steel crisis which has seen thousands of job losses at steel plants in Britain in recent weeks.

Javid is courting support from other member states ahead of a meeting with commissioners on Thursday.

Britain has seen a spike in job losses in the sector over the past month, as Tata Steel in Lincolnshire made serious cutbacks, and SSI in Redcar collapsed.

The industry has been quick to point the blame at the high level of low cost imports from China.

The steel workers union has described the current situation as an “ongoing threat to jobs”, and has highlighted the high cost of energy in Britain as well as high business rates.

Javid said: “I want to see steel top of the EU agenda.

“We cannot stand by while the steel industry across Europe, not just in the UK, faces such unprecedented challenges.

“The government wants to work with the EU and our European partners to do all we can to support our steel industry.”

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