British Steel

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 1:05 pm on 24th July 2019.

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Photo of Rachel Reeves Rachel Reeves Chair, Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee 1:05 pm, 24th July 2019

I very much welcome the activist approach that the Secretary of State has taken with regard to British Steel. I also welcome the fact that no deadline has been imposed, because the most important thing is that this time we find a buyer who is going to support British Steel, invest in it and see it through to the future, unlike the previous owner. Will he give an assurance that the Government will stand by British Steel until a new buyer is found? He knows full well that if a steelworks is closed, it is incredibly hard to reopen it. I urge him to look again at a sector deal for the steel sector, which is so important for the whole industry’s future. Our Select Committee, the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee, will be looking specifically at British Steel, but also at the wider steel industry, in our inquiry in September. We will be looking both at the actions that this Secretary of State has taken, which we welcome, and at those of his successor.