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To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment she has made of the benefits to the (a) economy and (b) steel sector of the UK steel sector’s commitment to increase capital investment in the UK by a quarter should steps be taken to reduce the price disparity on electricity costs between the UK steel sector and its international competitors.
The ability of our steel industry to compete globally and across Europe is a priority for this Government. We therefore provide electricity cost compensation and exemption support to maintain the UK’s reputation as an attractive location for these businesses.
In 2017, the Department commissioned independent research identifying high value opportunities for UK steel, worth up to £3.8 billion a year by 2030(1). To access these opportunities, as well as match funding grants for R&D, significant investment will need to be made by the sector.
We have a number of funds available to energy intensive industries, including steel, to help them increase energy efficiency and transition to a low carbon future. These funds include the £315 million Industrial Energy Transformation Fund, the Industrial Heat Recovery Support Programme and the recently announced £250 million Clean Steel Fund.
1. Future capacities and capabilities of the UK steel industry: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/uk-steel-industry-future-market-opportunities