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116 steel plant jobs go in closure.

THE AvestaPolarit stainless steel plant at Panteg,near Pontypool,Gwent,is to close next March with the loss of 116 jobs.

Eero Mustala, senior vice president of Finnish parent company Outokumpu, said: ``The closure has been made against a background of consistent poor financial performance over many years.'' Accumulated losses at Panteg since 1997 are 50 million euro (pounds 35m).

Mr Mustala said the company would help with redundancy counselling,job searches and retraining opportunities.

Michael Leahy,general secretary of the steelmakers' union ISTC, said: ``This is a tragedy for those losing their jobs, their families and the whole Pontypool community.

``I worked at Panteg in the 1960s and 1970s when it employed thousands and I know what the impact of these redundancies will be.

``The ISTC will be meeting with AvestaPolarit and asking them to reconsider .''
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Publication:Daily Post (Liverpool, England)
Date:Oct 24, 2003
Words:137
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