Ministry Of Defence “Run Out Of Money”
Stirling SNP MP, Steven Paterson, called on the Prime Minister to commit to promises made on Clyde ship building.
The call comes after a former Head of the Royal Navy, Lord West, made comments to the Defence Committee that the Ministry of Defence had “effectively run out of money” and that this was the reason for the delay in the start date for building 8 Navy frigates on the Clyde.
During Prime Minister’s Questions, Wednesday, Steven Paterson asked:
“Yesterday in the Defence Committee, the former First Sea Lord, Admiral Lord West, commented that the Ministry of Defence had effectively run out of money for shipbuilding. Given reports that another Russian submarine has had to be escorted out of UK waters overnight, does the Prime Minister share my concerns that the delays to beginning work on new frigates at the Clyde shipyards are causing real problems? Does he agree that it is essential that the money is allocated to deliver this programme in full and on schedule?”
Commenting afterwards, Steven Paterson said:
“We know that the workforce on the Clyde are very concerned about what the delay in the frigate building programme could mean for their jobs and the Government has a duty to respond to these concerns.
“The Tories and Labour made a series of claims during the Scottish independence referendum about employment at these shipyards and it’s vital that SNP MPs continue to hold David Cameron and his Government to their promises. Original plans were for the construction of 13 frigates on the Clyde, this is now scaled back to 8 and now we are facing serious delays that threaten jobs.
“The Prime Minister fails to take seriously concerns raised by a former First Sea Lord that reason for the delay is a lack of funding and his attitude does not address the anxiety of those who work in the industry and rely on these contracts.
“Unite the union have said that the workforce is ready to get to work on building Type 26 frigates, the UK Government must ensure that sufficient funding is available so that promises are kept and delivered on time.”