EU reform to protect thousands of jobs is a “bittersweet moment” for North East MEP

The long awaited reform on trade defence instruments had been blocked by Conservative ministers for years and is a very welcome development in protecting steelworkers from dumped under-priced steel.

Speaking in the European Parliament, Jude Kirton-Darling MEP said:

“This reform is a bittersweet moment for me and my Labour MEP colleagues, not only because we had to wait five years to get here thanks to the UK previously blocking it.

“But also because Tory ministers stood on the beach in Redcar wringing their hands and claiming that they were blocked by EU rules from protecting our steelworkers from dumped under-priced steel, while they blocked this legislation which could have helped.”

Referencing the devastating closure of the SSI Redcar steelworks site which meant 3,000 jobs were lost in the area, Jude added:

“The EU was blamed for this during the referendum and wrongly so. However, it did lead to high leave votes from our steel communities. We’re now left with the difficult task of replicating this trade remedies legislation in the UK post-Brexit.”

The vote on protection against dumped and subsidised imports from countries not members of the EU, which brings a much needed reform on trade defence instruments, has been voted by MEPs today in the European Parliament in Strasbourg.

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