THE THURROCK Labour group has submitted a resolution at the annual conference which calls changes on bankruptcy rules.
Members of the group will be travelling to the conference in Manchester, hoping to make the changes in the light of the Coryton Petroplus experience.
The motion reads: “Conference deplores the August closure of the Coryton Oil Refinery with the loss
of 800 skilled jobs. This is a serious blow to the industrial base of our country and is devastating for a local community that prides itself on its skills and commitment.
“Conference believes that this closure demonstrates the failure of this Government to support the energy infrastructure of our country. Their failure to even consider what could be done within European state aid rules to support the refinery is a severe blow to the people of southern Essex.
“Conference notes that currently there is no obligation for administrators to consider the national significance of infrastructure in such cases and resolves that Labour will explore changing the rules in this regard. Conference also resolves that Labour in government will develop an active industrial strategy to safeguard the national energy infrastructure and ensure we have the manufacturing capacity that makes the country fit for a strong and prosperous economic future.”
Polly Billington, Labour’s parliamentary candidate for Thurrock said: “Businesses sometimes fail and it would be wrong for any government to pledge to protect them all.
But Coryton was an important part of the energy infrastructure of the country as well as sustaining more than 800 jobs. It makes sense that of a company running something like that goes bankrupt, the administrators have to consider the national implications of it closing.
“I really hope we get the chance to make our case at Labour’s national conference in three weeks’ time. South Essex is worse off for the closure of Coryton but the whole country is too and we think there is a way we can make sure, if Labour was in government, important energy infrastructure could be protected.”