Member for Shellharbour Anna Watson has welcomed the announcement by BlueScope Steel that steel making production will continue in the Illawarra.

“This is a great announcement by the company and will come as a relief to the Illawarra community.

“Up to 10,000 direct jobs were under threat and the region faced a serious setback if the company decided to close down steel production in the region, she said.

Ms Watson paid tribute to the combined steel unions and BlueScope Steel workforce for making very difficult decisions over the last three months to ensure the sustainability of steel making in the Illawarra.

“The next time some lick-spittle Liberal politician attacks unions and workers, I want them to remember the very constructive role unions and workers played to save this crucial industry”, she said.

Ms Watson also welcomed the payroll tax concessions provided by the State Government, which Illawarra Labor MPs had been calling for and outlined in their 10 Point Plan to Support Illawarra Jobs.

“I am still quite puzzled why it’s taken the State Government so long to decide on the provision of this tax concession.

“Now that the State Government has adopted the very first point of Labor’s 10 Point Plan, they should implement the other nine”, she said.

Ms Watson said that she would attend a stakeholder meeting in Sydney this afternoon convened by the Federal Minister for Industry and Science, and hoped that some real outcomes would come from it rather than it being yet another empty talkfest.

26 October 2015