Following the news that the coke ovens and blast furnace at the Redcar steelworks are to close local UKIP MEP Jonathan Arnott expressed his “devastation”.
“This is truly devastating news and is the final nail in the coffin. The livelihoods of more than 2,000 people have been thrown on the scrapheap. It is outrageous and could all have been avoided if our government had not been forbidden by the EU from giving state aid.
“The high pound, Chinese market dumping, high cost of raw materials and especially government-caused artificially-inflated energy prices in an energy-intensive industry have all contributed to temporary unprofitability. Steel is trading at a fraction of the price it did in 2010, but it will recover.
“The Redcar steelworks was a textbook example of the need for state aid, because now much-needed skills will disappear from our economy.
“Our government blames EU rules; UKIP blames our government too, for not putting British business above EU rules. Today is a poignant reminder of how remaining in the European Union costs British jobs.
“However, it is not just the jobs of those directly employed that are affected but the suppliers and the small shops and businesses they use. It is all very well putting in money for those made redundant, what new jobs will be created for them?.