Home Business News Defence Secretary warned closing steel blast furnaces will ‘significantly impact’ defence supply chains

Defence Secretary warned closing steel blast furnaces will ‘significantly impact’ defence supply chains

25th Jan 24 2:51 pm

The Defence Secretary Grant Shapps has been warned by the GMB union that the closure of the Tata Steel blast furnaces will “significantly impact” defence supply chains.

Shapps has been warned that the UK will be left “woefully underprepared” which comes as Britain is preparing for war.

The GMB wrote that the UK not making steel will impact Britain’s crucial and essential defence supply chains.

Matt Roberts, GMB national officer, said, “We live in a turbulent global environment.

“Both Nato’s defence chief and Mr Shapps himself have warned that war in the next two decades is a possibility.

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“Yet we are on the brink of losing our full ability to make our own steel, vital to our defence industry, not least in building warships.

“It’s utter folly.

“GMB is very clear, we must retain sovereign capability to make virgin steel.”

Port Talbot is the UK’s largest steel plant and Tata has announced they will close the blast furnaces cost 3,000 jobs in South Wales.

Tata are planning to produce green steel and they have been awarded £500 million from the government.

This comes as General Sir Patrick Sanders and other former Generals and British Army officers, including MPs have said that they UK must prepare for war.

General Sir Patrick said in 2022 after Vladimir Putin invaded Ukraine that this “is our 1937 moment,” warning the British Army should now be at “high readiness.”

Sir Patrick warned on Wednesday that Britain cannot rely on our navy and air power, he added, “we must be able to credibly fight and win wars on land.”

General Sir Patrick warned that the British Army has been cut back too much over the years and over the past 12 years it has shrunk by 28%.

Tory MP Tobias Ellwood who served with General Sir Patrick told Sky News there is a “1939 feel to the world” and he warned that UK is not ready to deal with what is soon to come “over the horizon.”

Ellwood said General Sir Patrick is “one of the most cerebral thinkers that we’ve got” and a great “strategist.”

Ellwood said that the government needs “to listen and listen carefully, we’ve been too complacent.

“What’s coming over the horizon should shock us. It should worry us and we are not prepared.”

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