Council Leader Seeking Answers From Government Minister Over Shipyard Ferry Snub

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Council Leader Seeking Answers From Government Minister Over Shipyard Ferry Snub

Ferguson Marine Engineering

Local politicians have reacted with dismay after it emerged that Ferguson Marine, Port Glasgow is not among shipyards being invited to bid for a major Government ferry contract.

As reported on Tuesday, Caledonian Maritime Assets Ltd (CMAL) has put four yards in Poland, Turkey and Romania on the shortlist for the two vessels to be built for CalMac’s Islay services.

Inverclyde Council’s leader, Labour councillor Stephen McCabe, said:

“I am deeply disappointed that Ferguson Marine has not been shortlisted to submit a full bid for the latest Scottish Government ferry contract.

“I will be writing to Kate Forbes, cabinet secretary for finance and the economy, to seek an explanation as to why the Scottish Government shipyard failed to meet the criteria set for shortlisting.

“When the Scottish Government nationalised Ferguson Marine they promised that the yard had a bright future under public ownership. The fact Ferguson’s hasn’t been shortlisted for this contract must surely cast some doubt on the Scottish Government’s ability to deliver on the promises it made to the workforce and the wider Inverclyde community.”

Alba councillor Chris McEleny said:

“Awarding £100million of CalMac Ferries contracts to Turkey, Poland or Romania over Ferguson’s is an abomination.

“It’s unacceptable for The Scottish Government to hide behind CMAL. CMAL is wholly owned by Scottish government ministers.

“These ferries must be built in Scotland. Anyone that refuses to stand up for a Scottish shipyard to be awarded the contracts to build Scottish Government-owned ferries is not fit to represent our community.

“If the Scottish government committed the replacement of the CalMac fleet to the Clyde it would be the foundation of an industrial revival.”

This article appeared in Inverclyde Now.

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