MPs criticise government handling of Rover collapse

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has been criticised for its handling of the collapse of car manufacturer MG Rover last year.

About 2,000 of the 6,000 former employees at Rover’s Longbridge factory are still looking for work .

The Commons Public Accounts Committee said there were serious gaps in the way the DTI dealt with the crisis.

Committee chairman and Tory MP Edward Leigh said: “The truth is that [the DTI] had never managed to get close enough to the company to develop comprehensive plans for this kind of scenario and found itself trying to catch up with a rapidly developing situation.”

But the DTI said it had managed to come up with “timely, effective contingency plans” for Rover’s collapse.

“The government did a good job in challenging circumstances and carried out its duties fully and diligently,” a DTI spokesman said.

“Implementing that plan has helped over 4,400 former employees back into work and helped save over 2,500 jobs in the supply chain,” he added.

The car maker’s closure could cost taxpayers an estimated £600m, the Public Accounts Committee said.


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