Maritime 2050 Strategy Debate

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Department: Department for Transport

Maritime 2050 Strategy

Lord Berkeley Excerpts
Wednesday 13th March 2019

(2 years, 10 months ago)

Lords Chamber
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Lord Berkeley Portrait Lord Berkeley (Lab)
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My Lords, I welcome this report but does the Minister understand the importance of shipbuilding? The report states that the Government will,

“further develop the UK shipbuilding and maritime engineering industry, building on our global reputation for design, innovation and quality”.

All that applies to Appledore, which is due to close this Friday. What are the Government doing to make sure that they get more orders and find an operator for it?

Baroness Sugg Portrait Baroness Sugg
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My Lords, we published the National Shipbuilding Strategy in 2017, which will help transform naval and commercial shipbuilding. In relation to Appledore, the Government have worked hard with Babcock to identify defence opportunities that could protect the yard. However, regrettably, we were unable to identify any potential solutions. The South West Business Council has created a task force to help to ensure a future for the Appledore yard and negotiations with potential proprietors are ongoing. I know that the noble Lord has made representations on this matter to the Maritime Minister, who has responded and is working closely with local stakeholders.