Tata boss joins forces with other steel chiefs to call for action from EU to save the industry

The future of Hartlepools Tata plant was thrown into doubt earlier this year.

The future of Hartlepools Tata plant was thrown into doubt earlier this year.

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Tata’s boss has joined his industry counterparts in calling on Europe’s leaders to do everything they can to save the steel industry.

A total of 58 chief executives - almost every one across the continent - has signed a letter sent to heads of state and Governments to say: “Do what it takes to preserve our sector and the jobs of the 320,000 men and women who work with us.”

Making the right choices should ensure that our sector and its value chains flourish, investment continues, and the jobs of the men and women who work in our sector are sustained.

Letter from steel industry leaders to EU chiefs

Hans Fischer, the chief operating officer of Tata Steel Europe Ltd is among its signataries.

The call comes ahead of the two-day European Council summit which will run from Thursday.

Hartlepool’s Tata plant was put up for sale by its Indian owners earlier this year, but after selling off other ideas of its UK operations, it said in July it was putting the process on hold while it sought a European tie-up.

The firm still owns plants in Port Talbot, along with Rotherham, Shotton and Stocksbridge.

Eurofer, the European Steel Association, says the EU leaders are set to discuss the modernisation of their Trade Defence Instruments, which the industry has “consistently pushed for.”

It adds the open letter highlights its challenges and asks policy makers to develop more effective, faster measures to re-establish fair trade, align it with the US on the Market Economy Status of China, and build an EU Emissions Trading System that creates no cost burden.

The letter states: “During this meeting, you will be taking decisions that could help preserve an innovative, sustainable, and globally competitive steel industry in Europe.

“Making the right choices should ensure that our sector and its value chains flourish, investment continues, and the jobs of the men and women who work in our sector are sustained.

“We ask for your support on a number of issues that could make or break our industry.”

After stating its suggested improvements the letter says: “We trust that you can make progress on the above issues so that steel will be able to contribute to the transition to a competitive, low carbon European economy.”