Sheffield Council proposes steel industry campaign

Proposals for a campaign aimed at increasing Government investment in the South Yorkshire steel industry have been announced by Sheffield City Council.

The council wants to launch the campaign with a view to persuading the Government to invest in skills and apprenticeships in the steel industry.

The local authority also wants the Government to refocus the large company research and development tax credit regime so that it better supports companies looking to expand. The council says the current regime only allows cash payments from Government if companies are operating at a loss.

The proposed campaign would also seek investment in plant and machinery to prepare the steel industry for the economic upturn.

The council said it wanted to work with the South Yorkshire steel industry and neighbouring local authorities to launch a campaign in the "coming weeks" in a bid to lobby Government for more support.

Councillor Colin Ross, cabinet for employment, enterprise and development at the council, said: "This is a local issue on a national scale. South Yorkshire steel is at the heart of our manufacturing industry not only within the city or the region, but across the UK.

"Manufacturing is important to the city's economy and we have a real strength in high end, advanced manufacturing and materials, particularly metal - we need to protect that and will be pushing Government to change policies to provide a level playing field for companies currently feeling the strain of the recession."


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