Closures at Wilton, Teesside, chemical site threaten UK industrial base

The blog has been researching an article on the Wilton, Teesside chemical cluster. This site – a key part of the UK chemical industry – has suffered a spate of closures in the last 12 months, accelerating in the last few weeks.

With little scope for exporting large amounts of surplus ethylene, the future of Sabic’s cracker must now be under discussion.

Here is the latest on the site from local paper The Northern Echo

“EFFORTS to safeguard Teesside’s chemical industry were stepped up yesterday as both the Government and the debt-ridden owner of a threatened plant were warned of the potentially catastrophic effect of the sector’s demise.

Numerous companies in the sector’s supply chain have come together to write to the Government, stressing the necessity for both financial and skills support to be given during this turbulent time, which has seen several plants on Teesside announce their closures, and more left with question marks hanging over their futures.

Over 1,000 jobs have been, or are set to be, lost through the closures of the Invista and Elementis plants, the impending closures of Dow and Croda, the administration of Artenius, and the lingering doubts over the North Tees Petroplus refinery – a number which could increase ten-fold nationally, as their demise hits the supply chain.

In a statement, the companies involved said that although emphasis now seems to be on emerging technologies, the traditional skills must not be lost.

It said: “Our main concern is that the job losses in our businesses will result in a reduction in the total engineering expertise and capacity in the region and the UK.”"

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