Union working on proposal to keep Corus plant running

Union working on proposal to keep Corus plant running

London: Three companies are prepared to form a group that would maintain production at Corus Group’s Teesside steel plant in the UK, which is due to start shutting down on Friday, a trade union said.

The group is willing to sign an agreement to buy the output from the Teesside Cast Products plant, Terry Pye, the Unite union’s national officer for the steel industry, said in a telephone interview. The group would rent the site after six months and take over responsibility for the workforce, he said. He declined to identify the three companies.

UK financier Jon Moulton, who tried to buy car maker MG Rover in 2000, is putting together a group to bid for the plant, the Northern Echo reported, without saying how it obtained the information.

Corus, the European unit of Tata Steel Ltd, said it has lost about £150 million (Rs1,086 crore) keeping the plant open after a group of four customers who accounted for about 80% of Teesside’s business reneged on a 10-year supply contract last year. Corus plans to start the partial mothballing of the plant on Friday, it said in an emailed statement.