Thursday, 15 October 2015

Unravelling "long-term economic plan" hits Neath

Overcapacity in the packaging industry is blamed for the proposed closure of Crown's factory in Neath. Two hundred and fifty jobs are at risk in a plant which is important in this area, but a minor component in a huge multinational company. I remember Metal Box being a major player in the canning business and standing out for years against efforts by the Americans Continental Can and Crown Cork (as they were then) to take it over. Metal Box's merger with Carnaud of France in 1989 (during the previous Conservative administration) was the beginning of the end.

The Conservative government's long-term economic plan appears to consist of whittling away social security in order to appease international bond-holders while relying on financial services to keep the economy afloat. In industry, it is dependent on the goodwill of multinationals rather than continuing the indigenous strategy developed by Vince Cable and Ed Davey as part of the coalition. This strategy is fine when international business is buoyant, but hits the rocks during a downturn such as we currently experience.

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