You couldn’t make it up – This week a Refreshed NSbS to reinvigorate UK Shipbuilding, Maritime Awards in Glasgow herald journey to becoming world’s most competitive maritime nation by 2050, English Regional Authority mutes hulls to be built in foreign yards & failure of Scottish Government run-yard to compete for Scottish ferry building contracts
We’ve got some hard miles ahead us at the National Maritime UK Shipbuilders & Shiprepairers – National Shipbuilding Strategy Progress Board to help ensure ships are built in the UK to secure local jobs.
As The Scottish Government-controlled Caledonian Maritime Assets Limited (CMAL) announce a Turkish shipyard has won a £105 million contract to build two new lifeline CalMac Ferries Limited ferries for Islay.
Cemre Marin Endustri has been announced as the preferred bidder for the order against three other yards which will increase vehicle and freight capacity by nearly 40 per cent.
The move was described as an “embarrassment” for the Scottish National Party (SNP) by the Scottish Conservatives.
The first vessel is expected to be delivered by October 2024 and will enter service following sea trials and crew familiarisation. The second vessel will follow in early 2025.
Scottish Government-controlled Caledonian Maritime Assets Limited (CMAL), which owns the nation’s ageing ferry fleet, had invited four overseas companies to bid for the contract to build the two vessels – and excluded Inverclyde shipbuilder Ferguson Marine (Port Glasgow) Limited.
Transport Scotland said that the intention was to award the Islay ferries’ contract to the Cemre Marin Endustri shipyard after a 10 day standstill period.
The successful initial bids were from Damen Shipyard in Romania, Remontowa Shiprepair & Remontowa Shipbuilding Yard in Poland, and Turkish shipyards Sefine Shipyard – Turkiye Denizcilik Tersanecilik Turizm, and Cemre Marin Endustri.
It was confirmed Ferguson Marine embarked in a bid for the contract through the initial Pre-Qualification Questionnaire process but failed to make the shortlist.
The Alba Party is amongst those who have complained that there will be no possibility of there being any community benefits for Inverclyde the Islay contract.