Meeting date: Tuesday, January 7, 2020
Meeting of the Parliament 07 January 2020
Agenda: Time for Reflection, Business Motions, Topical Question Time, Urgent Question, Empty Homes, Committee Announcement (Ferry Vessels in Scotland), Decision Time, Levern Valley Defibrillator Community Partnership
- Time for Reflection
- Business Motions
- Topical Question Time
- Urgent Question
- Empty Homes
- Committee Announcement (Ferry Vessels in Scotland)
- Decision Time
- Levern Valley Defibrillator Community Partnership
Committee Announcement (Ferry Vessels in Scotland)
The next item of business is a committee announcement. I call Edward Mountain, convener of the Rural Economy and Connectivity Committee, to make an announcement on the committee’s inquiry into the construction and procurement of ferry vessels in Scotland.17:01
As convener of the Rural Economy and Connectivity Committee, I am pleased to announce that we have launched an inquiry into the construction and procurement of ferry vessels in Scotland. On 18 December 2019, the Cabinet Secretary for Finance, Economy and Fair Work announced the publication of the final report of the Ferguson Marine programme review board. That sets out an updated timetable and outstanding costs for the fulfilment of the contract to build two hybrid ferries to serve the Clyde and Hebrides ferry network, which was originally placed with Ferguson Marine in October 2015. The report indicates a delayed delivery range for the vessel 801, MV Glen Sannox, of October to December 2021, a new delivery range for the vessel 802 of July to October 2022, and an estimated outstanding cost for the delivery of the two vessels of £110.3 million, over and above the moneys that have already been paid.
As part of our inquiry, we will consider the key findings and recommendations of the Ferguson Marine programme review board and the impact of the repeated delays to the completion of those two vessels on the specific routes and the island communities that are awaiting their delivery. We will also consider the related matter of the Scottish Government taking public ownership of Ferguson Marine in October 2019. Those matters have important implications for the future procurement of maritime vessels to serve the Clyde and Hebrides ferry network, and for the on-going development and updating of the Scottish Government’s ferries plan and its vessel replacement and deployment programme.
Our intention in launching this inquiry is to explore the implications in some detail and, above all, to ensure that the appropriate lessons are learnt for the future. We plan to take oral and written evidence from a wide range of stakeholders, and I encourage all interested parties to contribute to our call for written evidence, which runs until 7 February. We also plan to visit Ferguson Marine’s shipyard to view at first hand the current state of progress on the hybrid vessels contract and to talk to members of the workforce and management on site. We look forward to reporting back to the Parliament with our findings and recommendations once the committee has completed its inquiry, later this year.