Coryton in doubt as state aid is denied
Jim Armitage is the City editor of The Independent and London Evening Standard group of newspapers. He has been a reporter and editor for more than 20 years and was recently shortlisted for the Press Gazette financial journalist of the year and The Society of Editors financial journalist of the year awards. He contributes news, investigative reports and comment to the Independent titles plus a daily column in the Evening Standard.
Saturday 16 June 2012
The future of the financially stricken Coryton refinery in Essex, which supplies around 20 per cent of London and the South-east's fuel, was in further doubt yesterday as it emerged the Government will not keep it alive with state aid.
Coryton's Swiss parent company, Petroplus, filed for bankruptcy in January, putting 850 jobs at risk and, some argued, jeopardising the capital's fuel supplies.
But the Department of Energy and Climate Change has decided that overcapacity in Britain's refining industry means Coryton should not be offered taxpayer-funded help.
Thurrock council said that closing the refinery would cost more than £100m – £30m in wages, £26m in contractor costs, £6m in locally sourced materials, £40m spent on chemicals and utilities, and £5m in business rates.
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