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'Huge Step Forward' as UK Shipbuilding Strategy is Welcomed by Society of Maritime Industries

10th March 2022
UK Shipbuilding Strategy is welcomed by Society of Maritime Industries CEO Tom Chant who heads the trade association representing UK maritime engineering sector UK Shipbuilding Strategy is welcomed by Society of Maritime Industries CEO Tom Chant who heads the trade association representing UK maritime engineering sector

The publication of the UK National Shipbuilding Strategy refresh today by the British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Merseyside, has been welcomed by the Society of Maritime Industries. 

SMI CEO Tom Chant said: "The Society of Maritime Industries has played a key role in the development of the National Shipbuilding Strategy and will continue to be a full partner in its evolution.

Safeguarding the UK sovereign shipbuilding capability for complex naval vessels by strengthening the wider commercial maritime industry through this raft of new initiatives is a very important step. The importance of this capability is underlined by tragic events in Ukraine which demonstrate Britain requires the resilience to be able to defend itself as an island nation as well as support our allies around the globe. 

This much anticipated release firmly supports the development of the UK’s shipbuilding enterprise. Our members have consistently told us industry requires confidence. With confidence businesses can invest for the long term, ramping up productivity and apprenticeship programmes. The Government’s firm commitment to a 30 year shipbuilding pipeline shows it is listening and we further welcome the increased emphasis on the social value of shipbuilding. This is a huge step forward which, consistently applied, will help to prevent UK shipbuilding opportunities go abroad.

We look forward to working with the National Shipbuilding Office, providing challenge on behalf of industry where necessary, to drive forward the strategy’s recommendations and to help create a globally successful, innovative and sustainable UK shipbuilding enterprise."

Published in Shipyards
Jehan Ashmore

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Jehan Ashmore

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Jehan Ashmore is a marine correspondent, researcher and photographer, specialising in Irish ports, shipping and the ferry sector serving the UK and directly to mainland Europe. Jehan also occasionally writes a column, 'Maritime' Dalkey for the (Dalkey Community Council Newsletter) in addition to contributing to UK marine periodicals. 

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Afloat will be focusing on news and developments of shipyards with newbuilds taking shape on either slipways and building halls.

The common practice of shipbuilding using modular construction, requires several yards make specific block sections that are towed to a single designated yard and joined together to complete the ship before been launched or floated out.

In addition, outfitting quays is where internal work on electrical and passenger facilities is installed (or upgraded if the ship is already in service). This work may involve newbuilds towed to another specialist yard, before the newbuild is completed as a new ship or of the same class, designed from the shipyard 'in-house' or from a naval architect consultancy. Shipyards also carry out repair and maintenance, overhaul, refit, survey, and conversion, for example, the addition or removal of cabins within a superstructure. All this requires ships to enter graving /dry-docks or floating drydocks, to enable access to the entire vessel out of the water.

Asides from shipbuilding, marine engineering projects such as offshore installations take place and others have diversified in the construction of offshore renewable projects, from wind-turbines and related tower structures. When ships are decommissioned and need to be disposed of, some yards have recycling facilities to segregate materials, though other vessels are run ashore, i.e. 'beached' and broken up there on site. The scrapped metal can be sold and made into other items.