Saturday, February 20, 2010

Overseas options...

Bring on the battle of Redcar: from John Redwood today. Companies will always find excuses to move their operations overseas but there are ways - as has been proven repeatedly in the past - to encourage them to stay; ways that over the last decade or so, one by one, have been reduced or stopped altogether. "The death of a steelworks is a major event. It sums up so much of what is going wrong in our economy. At a time when political parties agree we need to make more and export more, the closure of Redcar should be the centre of a major political debate."

The contrast between the manic, expensive and misplaced activism to “save” the banks, subsidising bankers and their bonuses to a fault, and the hand wringing inactivity over the steelworks is stark.

I can add only two things: (a) TATA the owners are set to make a killing in carbon credits [EU Referendum] by closing the plant

That this is not a major, front-page scandal should be a source of amazement. We are paying an electricity "tax" of the order of £1.5 billion to an Indian steelmaker, for the privilege of have the production in the UK closed down and the work transferred to India.

...and (b) can you imagine the uproar if the Conservatives were letting this happen?

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Paul said...

Not yet another rift in the Conservative party surely? Are they sudddenly going to adopt interventionist policies? Surely the free market means just that?

Cynicism aside somebody has probably already weighed up the saving Corus v the social cost calculation and come up with the answer that you can huff, and you can puff, but you can't save something if the owners don't want it saved.

Sad, very sad.

Span Ows said...

No but two things surprised me (apart from the irony of the who and the what) 1. the carbon emmissions/credits saga is having (and will have) a far wider effect than originally thought by the dumb-ass politicians that took it onboard: TATA, Mittal and others are raking in 9 zero sums for shafting the UK for the sake of our 'green credentials', and 2. when I first read what I've put the 2nd blockquote with which I'm in total agreement: "That this is not a major, front-page scandal should be a source of amazement".

Paul said...

"That this is not a major, front-page scandal should be a source of amazement".

I suspect because it's something that takes a bit of explaining and thinking through. Somebody should be doing a bit of lobbying.