Coalition manufactur​ing policy shot to pieces

The 3,000 job losses announced during the Labour party conference show the coalition's manufacturing strategy is non-existent and has been shot to pieces.

Tony Burke is the Assistant General Secretary of Unite

The 3,000 job losses announced during the Labour party conference show the coalition’s manufacturing strategy is non-existent and whatever strategy they had in their heads has been shot to pieces.

As news of the job losses leaked out last Sunday morning, Vince Cable and his team were again caught on the hop. The best they could say was the job losses at BAe Systems were a ‘serious knock’. In fact they represent a ‘serious disaster’ for workers and their families in the towns of Salmsbury and Wharton in Lancashire and in Brough in East Yorkshire and for UK manufacturing.

These are well-paid, highly skilled jobs that are under threat. No amount of 1980’s style Enterprise Zones will replace these jobs Mr Cable. And it gets worse. The research group Oxford Economics estimates a further 5,700 jobs will be at risk in the aerospace supply chain.

Osborne’s naive optimism that the private sector would soak up job losses from the public sector has taken yet another hammering. The BAe job losses show private sector jobs are being adversely affected by falling public sector demand and the re-balancing of the economy has been blown off course.

The government has also added to their woes by appalling decisions such as the Bombardier fiasco and the scrapping of Regional Development Agencies, who were previously on hand to help companies facing difficult times.

They have been replaced with toothless Local Enterprise Partnerships – the LEPs for Lancashire and East Yorkshire were the last to form these bodies in the North after rows about their composition. The RDAs – whilst not perfect – did have a remit and strategy to help with new investment (such as happened at Jaguar Land Rover in Wolverhampton) and had a remit to help with re-skilling, job transitions and support.

One of the reasons was Cable was caught on the hop again was that the RDAs’ role was shipped into Whitehall and the local radar of the RDAs has been turned off. BAe have not as yet made the business case for the job losses to the unions. But there are alternatives emerging.

Ian Gent, union convener at Brough, said:

“The belief among workers is that future Hawk contracts are on the horizon, with Saudi Arabia and Oman said to be considering placing “substantial” orders.”

Another idea is for the Typhoon fighter jet and make it more exportable; as Unite General Secretary Len McCluskey told the Labour party conference:

“If they don’t, UK taxpayers’ money will be spent on American equipment instead of supporting UK jobs.”

The main fear is that the government mishandles things again and allows the orders to go to the USA and India. If that were the case there would be a massive outcry – and the Government would not have the EU’s skirts to hide behind.

See also:

Cable should concentrate on promoting growth not GoaKevin Meagher, August 26th 2011

Coalition pins hopes on inefficient, short-term and costly enterprise zonesKevin Meagher, August 23rd 2011

Osborne’s ‘march of the makers’ is beating a retreatTony Burke, August 2nd 2011

Dismal growth figures leave many parts of Britain languishing in the deep freezeKevin Meagher, July 26th 2011

Round two for the Regional Growth Fund – but is the cupboard now bare?Kevin Meagher, July 2nd 2011

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18 Responses to “Coalition manufactur​ing policy shot to pieces”

  1. Alex Braithwaite

    Coalition manufactur​ing policy shot to pieces: http://t.co/Rdu5RMHn writes @UniteTheUnion’s @TonyBurke2010 @UniteManufactur

  2. Sue Marsh

    Coalition manufactur​ing policy shot to pieces: http://t.co/Rdu5RMHn writes @UniteTheUnion’s @TonyBurke2010 @UniteManufactur

  3. TheCreativeCrip

    Coalition manufactur​ing policy shot to pieces: http://t.co/Rdu5RMHn writes @UniteTheUnion’s @TonyBurke2010 @UniteManufactur

  4. Steve Hart

    Coalition manufactur​ing policy shot to pieces: http://t.co/Rdu5RMHn writes @UniteTheUnion’s @TonyBurke2010 @UniteManufactur

  5. Joy Johnson

    RT @SteveHartUnite: RT @leftfootfwd: Coalition manufactur​ing policy shot to pieces: http://t.co/7SG7cF2a writes … http://t.co/56kvoMZg

  6. Meric Apak

    RT @SteveHartUnite: RT @leftfootfwd: Coalition manufactur​ing policy shot to pieces: http://t.co/7SG7cF2a writes … http://t.co/56kvoMZg

  7. Michael

    Coalition manufactur​ing policy shot to pieces l Left Foot Forward – http://j.mp/nNR0il

  8. Patrick McGuire

    Coalition manufactur​ing policy shot to pieces l Left Foot Forward – http://j.mp/nNR0il

  9. Presliey Vondee

    Coalition manufactur​ing policy shot to pieces: As news of the job losses leaked out last Sunday morning, Vince … http://t.co/FOyBoVhr

  10. Alex Braithwaite

    RT @leftfootfwd: Coalition manufactur​ing policy shot to pieces http://t.co/toyRZ7tP

  11. Robert the crip

    Labour built three aircraft carriers and decided to buy American planes, then we needed helicopters did they decide to build them here nope we will buy them from America, so the idea we would buy America tools of war has been ongoing for a while. Why have a war if America cannot make money out of it. The American have a fighter which has a proven record our brand new over priced jet fight has proven it’s self in a country which uses catapults and marbles to shoot down our air force. Sorry Libya is not a proving ground we all know we have been keeping BEA alive and now it’s a private industry it lives or die like the smaller factories which close down under labour and labour did sod all 3000 or 300 jobs it can destroy a town city village.

    We are coming out of wars and I do not think we or many other countries will decide to start to many more fights, sadly I suspect the future is a combined force with the rest of the EU, hiring equipment from countries.

    BAE has to live in what is after all labour party world of no lending banking crises and shortage of money, the big three Russia America and China tend to be better at selling their goods. And India has for some time now been looking at China as a buyer market.

    welcome to the new world.

  12. Googlyfish UK

    Googlyfish Job News Coalition manufactur​ing policy shot to pieces | Left Foot Forward http://t.co/nRvSaIby

  13. Coalition manufactur​ing policy shot to pieces | Power In A Union

    […] article first appeared on Left Foot Forward on September 30th. Recommend on Facebook Share with Stumblers Tweet about it Print for later […]

  14. London IWW

    Coalition manufactur​ing policy shot to pieces http://t.co/oaPhJyVh | #UKeconomy

  15. TheCreativeCrip

    Coalition manufactur​ing policy shot to pieces http://t.co/oaPhJyVh | #UKeconomy

  16. Look Left – Tory obsession with Europe goes on. And on. And on | Left Foot Forward

    […] are to be set up to help tackle the problems caused by BAe’s plan to axe 3,000 jobs, job losses described by Unite Assistant General Secretary Tony Burke on Left Foot Forward on Friday as a “serious […]

  17. Jack

    @ Comment above: Clearly you have no idea, go study economics, maybe work in the defence sector or even just learn how to spell then your pitiful opinion may be entertained but I highly doubt that.

  18. Unions, RDAs, and even the government led to a victory for Wolverhampton | Left Foot Forward

    […] also: • Coalition manufacturing policy shot to pieces – Tony Burke, September 30th […]

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