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Stricken shipyard could be publicly owned 'within month'

Ferguson Marine could be sold to the Scottish Government in a matter of weeks.

Shipyard: Ferguson Marine could go public in weeks.
Shipyard: Ferguson Marine could go public in weeks. © HEMEDIA / SWNS Group

The sale of shipyard Ferguson Marine to the Scottish Government could be complete in the next month.

An update from administrators said there had been three other offers for the Inverclyde site, but the sale to the Scottish Government still represents the best outcome for creditors.

Staff at the shipyard were told of the latest position on Wednesday.

Scottish ministers and administrators are now in talks to complete the sale, which is expected to be finalised in the next four weeks.

Finance secretary Derek Mackay said: "We have always been clear that we want to complete the vessels, secure jobs and give the yard a future.

"Administrators have concluded that despite other bids being submitted for the yard, the Scottish Government's offer presents the best outcome for creditors.

"We are working with the administrators to bring the yard into public ownership.

"I will be there on Monday to meet with the excellent workforce and reiterate the Scottish Government's commitment to achieving the best possible outcome for the yard and its employees.

"While there is still more to be done, our actions have ensured that there will be a future for Ferguson's."

https://stv.tv/news/west-central/1440018-ferguson-shipyard-nationalised-after-administration-fears/ | default

Scottish Conservative transport spokesman Jamie Greene said: "This is potentially disastrous news for Scotland's shipbuilding industry. 

"After minimal effort in trying to find a buyer it appears the SNP has thrown in the towel, leaving the future of our shipbuilding industry in question. 

"The SNP has no idea how much public ownership will cost the taxpayer, no clue how public ownership affects its ability to bid for work, and has offered no guarantees that we will see new ferries any time soon. 

"Any suggestion that the nationalists have saved the yard and jobs is complete nonsense. 

"They are responsible for the mess the yard is in and they should have let it flourish in the private sector."

He added: "We need a parliamentary inquiry to get to the bottom of this mess and to hold ministers to account for their failings over this fiasco."

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