UK Steel presents wish list to new government

The change in government leadership in the UK has caused steel industry umbrella association UK Steel to produce a new priorities policy document for the sector, Kallanish notes. This asks the Boris Johnson government “… to seize upon the opportunity to revitalise and accelerate the Industrial Strategy putting in place the conditions for a strong manufacturing sector whatever the outcome of Brexit.”

‘New Deal For Steel’ restates the industry’s commitment to innovation and investment here in the UK. It also seeks to build a partnership with government to deliver the right business environment, allowing the sector to grow and to prosper, UK Steel says.

The association is calling for six key actions from the government. These are to secure tariff free access to EU markets for UK steel, critically avoiding the imposition of EU steel safeguards on UK exports. The association also wants the administration to deliver competitive electricity prices for UK steel producers in line with those borne by EU competitors.

Thirdly, UK Steel is asking for Incentivised investment via business rates re-structuring, including the removal of plant and machinery from valuations. It also wants the government to maximise the economic value to the UK of its public infrastructure investment, by taking a strategic approach to public procurement of steel.

The final two key actions relate to research and development and carbon pricing. UK Steel is asking for a boost for UK steel industry R&D by using the £225 million ($272m) in returned industry levies from the EU Research Fund for Coal and Steel. It also wants the new government to work with industry to develop a more competitive climate change and carbon pricing policy.