Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page:

From The Socialist newspaper, 15 September 2009

Anglesey Aluminium - nationalise to save jobs

THE RUNNING down of smelting facilities at Anglesey Aluminium is a devastating blow to the economy of Holyhead and the rest of the island of Anglesey, North Wales. The company (which at the beginning of the year employed over 500 and was estimated to account for a third of Anglesey's economy), will only retain around 80 workers.

Dylan Roberts and Iain Dalton

The immediate pretext for the closure of the plant is the ending of a discounted energy supply from Wylfa nuclear power station. The end of this deal had been on the cards for some time now - the closure of Wylfa, announced back in 2006, is expected in 2010. But the company has in the past stated that they would not be threatened by the closure of Wylfa. So what has changed now?

The current crisis of capitalism and rising production costs are being used as a scapegoat, for attacks on pay and conditions and the switching of production to non-unionised plants in low wage economies, in order to drive up profit margins further.

In most cases, there is no pressing need to switch production; it is simply another case of profits coming before people.

Such is the devastation that these job losses will cause to the island's economy that the Welsh Assembly and Westminster governments have been forced to intervene, offering 59 million in state subsidies over a four year period, which amounts to a massive 1 million a month.

However, management at Anglesey Aluminium, Rio Tinto (which owns 51% of AA), and Kaiser Aluminium (49% ownership) rejected the deal, claiming that they would need at least double that figure in state subsidies to retain production on Anglesey.

Yet Anglesey Aluminium has been extremely profitable in the 36 years it has been on the island. Furthermore, both Rio Tinto and Kaiser Aluminium are multinationals turning huge profits.

Rio Tinto posted record profits in 2008, delivering net profits in the first quarter of 2008 of an astronomical US $2.94 billion. They have not fared quite so well in the first quarter of 2009 but still made $1.6 billion in net profits in that period, or $177 million per day!

Just like the banks, we see private enterprise demanding that the losses are nationalised while the profits remain private.

Despite redundancy notices being issued, the situation is not hopeless as the action at the Vestas Blades plant on the Isle of Wight shows. There, workers and their supporters have created huge pressure upon both the company and government to stop its closure.

They are currently taking action to stop the remaining wind turbine blades and machinery being removed from the plant as part of their campaign to force the government to nationalise the plant.

In both cases the levels of profits of the multinational companies, and the continued profitability of these plants, demonstrates their viability. Both companies should be made to open their books to see where these profits have gone, and if necessary the plants should be nationalised, under democratic workers' control and management, to ensure future jobs and opportunities for skilled workers.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.

In The Socialist 15 September 2009:

Big business to blame for climate change

No Job Cuts

No to cuts in jobs and services

Capitalist market prescribes diet of cuts

TUC conference - reactions to Brown's speech

TUC conference: Fightback rally

War and occupation

End the Afghan nightmare now

Socialist Party workplace news

Nationalise Anglesey Aluminium to save jobs

Rover - Gangster capitalists were treated as saviours

London RMT: Discussing an election coalition

Leeds council workers on indefinite strike

National Greed

Construction workers' pay - reject the deal!

The fight against the building blacklist

Socialist Students

Students left penniless

Cardiff: Youth Fight for Jobs

College workers strike against vicious cuts


Vestas: the fight is far from over

Coventry Socialist Party councillors show support for Vestas

Socialist Party feature

Interview with POA leader Brian Caton

Socialist Party women

Victory - Decent jobs not exploitation

Socialist Party review

A life of revolution

International socialist news and analysis

Japan: Election ends Liberal Democrats' 54-year reign

Bangladesh: Angry protests at police attacks

Sri Lanka: Defiant Tamil protest


Home   |   The Socialist 15 September 2009   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate  

Related links:


triangleWelsh-speaking worker bullied by boss

triangleWater quality threat to health

triangleStop the Anglesey nuclear time-bomb


triangleNationalise to save jobs at BAE Systems

triangleTories wreck our NHS

triangleDefuse the consumer debt time bomb: nationalise the banks!


triangleBalloting members on the pay cap

triangleWorkplace news in brief

triangleBoeing bust-up threatens thousands of skilled jobs


trianglePowerful picture of the Port Talbot steel workers' struggle

triangleYoung people being strangled by debts

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns


North West

Arriva North West bus drivers strike over pay


Democratic rights

Conference on state spies: who's watching who?



Striking back against sackers' charter at Leeds Uni


Royal Mail

Royal Mail bosses block strike - back postal workers



Balloting members on the pay cap



'Dazzling' Bad Art show points to socialist future



Sheffield Labour council threatens peaceful protesters with prison


South West Wales

Hundreds turn out for rally aimed at removing west Wales Tory MP



Uprising to save the NHS!



Can you donate to the Socialism 2017 appeal?


East London

No cuts - hands off King George A&E!


North London

North London hospital workers fight cuts and job losses



Nationalise to save jobs at BAE Systems



Schools "can't go any further" - stop the cuts: set deficit budgets now



Socialist Students 'welcome' Hillary Clinton to Swansea

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...

Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party

triangle19 Oct Arriva North West bus drivers strike over pay

triangle18 Oct Russia, October 1917: When workers took power

triangle18 Oct Tories torn - bin them now

triangle18 Oct Royal Mail bosses block strike - back postal workers

triangle18 Oct Balloting members on the pay cap

triangle13 Oct The end of the Tories?

triangle11 Oct Nasty party out the Tories

More ...

triangle21 Oct Birmingham: NSSN Solidarity Forum

triangle23 Oct Chesterfield Socialist Party: The continuing struggle for abortion rights

triangle24 Oct Liverpool Socialist Party: The October Russian Revolution 100 years ago to the day

triangle25 Oct Salford Socialist Party: The October 1917 Russian revolution

More ...

Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube



October 2017

September 2017

August 2017

July 2017

June 2017

May 2017

April 2017

March 2017

February 2017

January 2017





















Platform setting: = No platform choice