GMB Calls on government to ensure Scotland's fair share of new Navy vessel work.
It’s the right and responsible thing for the government to do in order to boost the economic and employment prospects of our shipbuilding industry and communities amid the uncertainty of ‘Brexit’ says GMB Scotland.
GMB Scotland has today (Thursday 28 July) called on David Mundell MP, Secretary of State for Scotland, to support shipbuilding trade unions’ calls for the manufacture of Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA) vessels to be carried out in yards across Scotland.
The Ministry of Defence (MoD) has confirmed that contracts for three 35,000 tonne vessels, which will provide auxiliary support to the Royal Navy’s aircraft carrier fleet, are now open to expressions of interest.
Amid delays to the promised type-26 frigate programme on the Upper Clyde, GMB Scotland has written to the Secretary of State to ask what steps the UK government is taking to ensure that the yards on the Upper Clyde and Rosyth will have the opportunity to benefit from the RFA contract.
Gary Cook, GMB Scotland Organiser and Scottish Chair of the Confederation of Shipbuilding and Engineering Unions (CSEU), said: “Shipbuilding is a vital to Scotland, ensuring thousands of skilled jobs that generate hundreds of millions of pounds in wages for our economy – we cannot do without it and particularly as the wider manufacturing sector continues to decline.
The RFA contracts present a major opportunity to make good on the Prime Minister’s promise that ‘Britain will be a country that works for everyone’ and that’s why we have asked Mr Mundell to ensure he is standing up for the interests of our members in the shipbuilding sector.
It would be hypocrisy and a travesty if the first act of the new government in our shipbuilding sector was to award to the manufacturing contracts to overseas competitors on the basis of the lowest cost possible.
With the delays to the frigate programme unresolved, some stability can be provided to the workforce on the Clyde and Fife if they are able to benefit from a fair share of the work, opportunity and prosperity these vessels could generate.
It’s the right and responsible thing for the government to do in order to boost the economic and employment prospects of our shipbuilding industry and communities amid the uncertainty of ‘Brexit’.”
Contact: GMB Scotland Organiser Gary Cook on 07712 667594 or Peter Welsh, GMB Scotland Communications, on 07976 447 077 or GMB press office on 07970 863411 or firstname.lastname@example.org