Monday, 26 January 2009

A sad day for Welsh industry

It looks like at least a 1,000 jobs will be lost at Corus - one of Wales biggest employers. Staff at Llanwern, Shotton, Flintshire, Ammanford and Pontarddulais are likely to be affected according to the firm. 2,500 jobs are going UK wide, over 10% of the company's work force.

It’s days like today that bring the realities of the Credit Crunch home. Take Ammanford for example, the loss of 73 jobs may not make headlines, but as a proud native of the Ammanford area I can foresee the devastation it will bring, losses like this have a massive impact on such a small and tight-knit community. With Woolies closing, an iconic shop in the town, and even more jobs being lost its going to be a tough couple of months.

Some say that the high level of public sector employment has shielded areas of South Wales from the Credit Crunch, I wonder what those at the Llanwern plant would have to say to that? Re-skilling is not easy for someone who has been doing a job for 30+ years, and with no sign of an economic miracle on the horizon, that is what lots of people will have to try and do to get back into work.

Can anything be done? So far the Assembly has been fairly passive in its reaction to the Crunch, and I am sceptical that it will have achieved anything more than it has by the time Rhods leaves in September. He may claim that everything will have been “put in place” by then to tackle the crisis but call me sceptic because I very much doubt it. Mr Brown talks about spending our way out of recession, but sadly for those threatened with job losses, I don’t think Clause 4 will be revoked and industries renationalised.

It looks like tough times ahead for communities all across Wales, lets hope that the political class come up with some good ideas to help, and soon.

Dewi Un
Image used Courtesy of Henkerik @


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