The Business Secretary’s “jobs tomorrow” attitude in face of potential job losses on Teesside is offensive to the workers at the at-risk Mitsubishi Chemical site, said Stockton North MP, Alex Cunningham after he probed ministers about the government’s support for industries facing high energy costs.
Raising the issue of Mitsubishi Chemicals which announced it was consulting on the closure of its Billingham site – putting 238 jobs at risk – in parliament, Alex asked the Business Secretary, Grant Shapps if he was aware of this latest blow to Teesside and what his department was doing support industries and protect jobs, only to be told by the Business Secretary that “jobs were coming to Teesside”.
No more information about government support for Teesside workers or industries was forthcoming. Instead the minister, who it would appear didn’t even know about the crisis, talked about new jobs for Teesside sometime in the future.
“The Business Secretary’s ‘jobs tomorrow’ attitude in the face of a potential loss of hundreds of Teesside jobs is not only extremely offensive to Mitsubishi Chemical workers, but cold comfort to people who are now waiting to see if they will have employment in the new year.
“While his dismissiveness to potential redundancies is appalling it’s also sadly unsurprising. This is a government that has abdicated responsibility over other local industrial matters such as the partial closure of CF Fertilisers, and allowed Teesside industries like SSI and Cleveland Bridge go to the wall.
“Not only does the government have no ideas, it has no political will to tackle the issues facing industries like Mitsubishi.”