Today, I was among the MPs from different parties across the House of Commons who argued for Government to intervene over the hostile bid by Melrose for GKN. GKN is one of Britain’s oldest and largest engineering companies making automotive and aerospace components. GKN Aerospace’s Kings Norton plant in my Birmingham Northfield constituency specialises in aircraft windscreens.
I am extremely concerned that the hostile bid that has been put to the shareholders of GKN by Melrose would be bad for the UK’s aerospace and automotive sectors and bad for employees of GKN. In my speech to the House of Commons today, I explained my reasons for taking this view
Analysts have observed that a bid like this one would not be allowed to proceed in France or Germany where the rules governing takeovers are different. It is a yet another reminder that reform of the UK’s Takeover Laws is urgently needed to defend the public interest and safeguard the long term future of our industrial base.
Even our existing takeover laws, however, allow Government Ministers to intervene under Section 58 of the Enterprise Act 2002 where a bid raises national security concerns. GKN Aerospace, including its Kings Norton plant, make specialist components for military as well as commercial aircraft so this bid does indeed involve issues of national security. Today I called on the Government to intervene in this takeover to safeguard national security and put the long term health of British industry first.
Welcome to my latest Parliamentary newsletter.
Space prevents the newsletter covering all of what I have been doing over the past month. However, hopefully it provides a flavour of some of the local issues I have taken up as well as my actions in Parliament. You’ll find updates on North Worcestershire Golf Club, local government funding and other issues. As ever, please do not hesitate to get in touch with me on these or any other issues.
Local charities and community groups in the Northfield area have the opportunity to apply for funding between £500 and £20,000 raised by players of the People’s Postcode Lottery.
Today the latest funding rounds for the People’s Postcode Trust, Postcode Local Trust and Postcode Community Trust have opened for applications. Between 14 and 28 February 2018, charities are being urged to submit an expression of interest in the funding, which requires basic details about the organisation, as well as a short description of the project they are proposing.
Residents living close to North Worcestershire Golf Course will know that in August 2017 a renewed application by Bloor Homes to build 950 homes on the site of the old golf course was rejected by Birmingham City Council.
Bloor Homes have now lodged an appeal with the government, in an attempt to overturn this decision
If you submitted comments to Birmingham City Council when the planning application was in front of them, those comments will be forwarded to the Planning Inspector. However, you can also submit comments direct to the Planning Inspectorate – regardless of whether you have already sent in comments to the City Council and I would urge you to do so. You can do that by entering the application reference number 3192918 on the Planning Inspectorate website here – https://acp.planninginspectorate.gov.uk/.
Government funding to Birmingham City Council has been cut by almost £650 million since 2010. This is the biggest cut in local government history and is more than 75 per cent of the City Council’s current net budget.
To make matters worse, due to unfairness in the way local government funding has been allocated by the Conservative Government, Birmingham is £100 million a year worse off than if cuts were made fairly.
Yesterday I asked the Government that all local authorities are treated equally in terms of the level of cuts made annually. That would mean that Birmingham City Council receives the extra £100 million extra funding it deserves.