The manufacturing Giant-Carillion goes into liquidation

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Carillion to go into liquidation

Construction giant Carillion is to go into liquidation, threatening thousands of jobs.

The move came after talks between the firm, its lenders and the government failed to reach a deal to save the UK’s second biggest construction company.

However, the government will provide funding to maintain the public services run by Carillion.

The firm is involved in major projects like the HS2 high-speed rail line, as well as managing schools and prisons.

It is the second biggest supplier of maintenance services to Network Rail, and it maintains 50,000 homes for the Ministry of Defence.

The company has 43,000 staff worldwide – 20,000 in the UK. It is not clear yet how those staff will be affected.

Live: Reaction to Carillion’s collapse
Where did it go wrong for Carillion?

Some of Carillion’s contracts will be taken on by other firms and some could be renationalised, according to BBC business editor Simon Jack.

Thousands of current and former staff have money in Carillion pension funds. Those funds will now be managed by the Pension Protection Fund (PPF).

A spokesperson from the PPF said: “We can confirm that we have been notified of the liquidation. We know this news will raise serious concerns for all people involved. We want to reassure members of Carillion’s defined benefit pension schemes that their benefits are protected by the PPF.”

Carillion chairman Philip Green said: “This is a very sad day for Carillion, for our colleagues, suppliers and customers that we have been proud to serve over many years.

“In recent days, however, we have been unable to secure the funding to support our business plan and it is therefore with the deepest regret that we have arrived at this decision.”

Carillion’s government projects

HS2 Building part of the high-speed rail line between London, Birmingham, Leeds and Manchester

MoD homes Maintains 50,000 homes for the Ministry of Defence

Schools Manages nearly 900 buildings nationwide

Network Rail Second largest supplier of maintenance services

Prisons Holds £200m in prison contracts

PA

Shadow business secretary Rebecca Long-Bailey said Labour wanted a full investigation into the government’s dealings with Carillion: “This company issued three profit warnings in the last six months, yet despite those profit warnings the government continued to grant contracts to this company.”

She added that she did not want the government to take on the contracts that were loss-making, while selling the profitable ones to other private companies.

Disastrous news

Bernard Jenkin, the Conservative chairman of the House of Commons Public Administration Committee, said: “This really shakes public confidence in the ability of the private sector to deliver public services and infrastructure.”

He said there needed to be a change of “mindset” at companies that do a lot of work for the taxpayer.

“You’ve got to treat yourself much more as a branch of the public service, not as a private company just there to enrich the shareholders and the directors,” he said.

“Ironically, Whitehall tends to do contracts with companies that it always does contracts with, because that’s the safe thing to do – that’s the perception. A great many small and medium-sized companies feel excluded.”

Mick Cash, the general secretary of the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union, said: “This is disastrous news for the workforce and disastrous news for transport and public services in Britain.

“RMT will be demanding urgent meetings with Network Rail and the train companies today with the objective of protecting our members jobs and pensions.

“The infrastructure and support works must be immediately taken in house with the workforce protected.”

Rehana Azam, national officer of the GMB union, said: “What’s happening with Carillion yet again shows the perils of allowing privatisation to run rampant in our schools, our hospitals and our prisons.”

source: BBC.Com

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