Tata Steel has halted plans to sell the Port Talbot steelworks and is instead working on keeping its UK business as part of a joint venture with the German conglomerate ThyssenKrupp.
The announcement will be met with a mixed reaction by Tata Steel UK’s 11,000 workers. While the Port Talbot steelworks in south Wales is now closer to securing its survival, Tata warned that the deal could still fall apart.
The company said on Friday night that it was in talks with ThyssenKrupp about combining its European steel businesses, including in the UK, but the deal requires financial support from the British government and a restructuring of Tata Steel’s pension scheme. It also confirmed it would look to sell its speciality steels business, which is based in Yorkshire, and its pipe mills in Hartlepool. These sites employ around 2,000 people. The speciality steels division faces a Serious Fraud Office investigation and some of its top staff are suspended, which could complicate a sale.
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