LESS than two weeks since it emerged a proposed deal to secure the future of steel plants in Llanwern and Caerphilly could be off the table, the future of steelmaking in the UK has been thrown into further turmoil.

Earlier this month it emerged a proposed merger between Tata Steel - which owns plants in Llanwern and Caerphilly, as well as a massive facility in Port Talbot - and German firm Thyssenkrupp could be blocked by the European Union over competition fears.

This has thrown the future of the plants owned and run by Tata, which three years ago said it planned to close its entire UK operation - only rolling back on the plan after talks began on the proposed merger -into doubt.


And now the UK steel industry has been thrown into more turmoil after it was revealed British Steel, the country's second-largest steel producer, could go into liquidation in a matter of days.

On Monday evening Sky News reported the company, which employs thousands in Scunthorpe and Teeside, was on the brink of collapse, with union leaders to meet with business secretary Greg Clark this morning.

Calling on Greybull, which owns British Steel, to take action to protect jobs, a spokesman from Unite said: "We would urge Greybull to reach a deal with the government. Thousands of jobs depend on the outcome.

"And we will be speaking with the government first thing in the morning."

British Steel could not be reached for comment.

The company has reportedly asked for a package of support to tackle Brexit-related issues.

Last week a spokesman said: "We are pleased to confirm that we have the required liquidity while we work towards a permanent solution."