Millions of workers in Britain will feel fired up after the decision was made to keep Port Talbot open, says construction employment experts Randstad UK.  

After months of negotiations Tata Steel announced it would keep the blast furnaces at the steelworks on and cut none of its 4,000-strong workforce for at least five years. 

The south Wales plant, which is the largest in Britain, was put up for sale by its owner in March after steel prices plummeted due to a glut of the metal dumped in the market. 

Since then the price of steel has recovered after the government stepped in with hundreds of millions of pounds. In January 2015, the price of steel per tonne was £335 before falling to £250 one year later. It now stands at £435 - a increase of 70%.

It was feared that closing Port Talbot would lead to a wider industrial skills emergency and cause a knock on effect that would ripple across construction industries.  

Seven thousand workers in Wales rely on steel for their jobs with 24,000 jobs in the UK directly involved in the manufacture of the metal. In total millions of jobs in the production sector of the economy are linked to steel.   

Owen Goodhead, MD of Randstad Construction, Property & Engineering said Tata’s commitment was a sign of confidence in British manufacturing.    

“Keeping the blast furnaces on at Port Talbot was the right decision by Tata to protect the thousands of immediate jobs in Wales,” he said. “But it’s not just south Wales that benefits but the rest of Britain, too. Closure risked 24,000 steel manufacturing jobs and could have weighed down on millions across the country.

“With long-term infrastructure projects like the Heathrow Airport runway and HS2 on the table, keeping Port Talbot open for at least another 10 years helps shape a more balanced economy and shows Britain can go head-to-head with global competitors and prove British steel is sustainable and profitable.”


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Notes to editors
The Randstad group is the second largest recruitment & HR services providers in the world with a top five position in the UK and a top three position in fifteen countries including the US, France and Germany. 

In the UK, Randstad’s business lines serve the public and private sectors across Accounting and Financial services; Business Support; Construction, Property and Engineering; Education; Health and Social Care; Interim Management and Search; Human Resources; IT; Legal; Retail; Sales, Marketing and Creative; Student and Worker Support and In-House and Managed Services.

Randstad has 1,600 corporate employees in the UK, working in 255 locations. UK revenue in 2015 was €909.5 million. Randstad was founded in 1960 and is headquartered in Diemen, the Netherlands. Randstad Holding nv is listed on the NYSE Euronext Amsterdam. For more information see www.randstad.co.uk and www.randstad.com.

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