British Steel seeks a loan of up to £75m from government

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A British Steel statement noted: "Uncertainties around Brexit are posing challenges for all businesses including British Steel".

British Steel's main plant is in Scunthorpe, with other sites situated in Teesside, Cumbria and North Yorkshire.

The company employs 4,500 and up to as many as 20,000 people within the supply chain.

British Steel is said to be having "constructive discussions" with it's stakeholders on how to proceed and a range of support measures addressing "broader Brexit issues".

Gill Furniss, the shadow business minister, said: "The government's continued failure to support this vital industry is to blame".

The money meant the private equity-owned firm could avoid a steep European Union fine.

According to Sky News, British Steel is seeking a further £75m loan from the government, with insolvency experts placed on standby in case further funds can not be secured.

Uncertainty over Brexit has led to a slump in orders from Europe and it has also been affected by USA tariffs on steel imports. The weakness of Sterling since the referendum has meant that the value of exports has also declined.

Britain's second biggest steelmaker wants another loan of £75 million to avert its demise, Sky News reported citing unnamed insiders, adding that insolvency experts were on standby.

British Steel blamed "Brexit-related issues" for its difficulties, with one source saying orders from increasingly anxious customers in the European Union had "dried up".

Trade unions urged ministers to intervene, saying yesterday that the steel industry's future was on the line.

GMB national officer Ross Murdoch said: "This government has a track record of sitting on its hands while United Kingdom manufacturing collapses round its ears".

"Now is the time to take action, minsters must come out and guarantee the loan required to safeguard British Steel".

The news comes amid uncertainty over the future of Tata Steel's main European operations based in the United Kingdom after German industrial conglomerate Thyssenkrupp last week scrapped merger plans with the Indian giant.

British Steel is owned by investment firm Greybull Capital, who founded the long steel products maker in 2016 after snapping up assets from Tata Steel.

Tata said its United Kingdom business would keep running, but admitted it was facing tough operating conditions in the UK.

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