Union GMB Scotland has accused the UK government of washing its hands of the responsibility to deliver local offshore wind jobs.

The workers group was responding to comments made by Scottish Secretary Alister Jack (pictured) who told parliament on Wednesday that fabrication taking place overseas is the “market economy”.

Jack was addressing a question about the fabrication in Indonesia of jacket foundations for EDF Renewables’ 450MW Neart na Gaoithe wind farm.

He also said the UK needs to “find a better way of efficiently” delivering offshore wind components.

GMB Scotland organiser Hazel Nolan said: “Alister Jack has unwittingly revealed the truth: the UK government has washed their hands of their responsibility to deliver renewables jobs here in the UK.

“Far from ‘the market economy’, what we are seeing is yards here in the UK being abandoned by our government and left to compete with heavily state subsidised yards abroad.

“The Scottish and UK governments have failed to produce an industrial strategy to match the rhetoric on green jobs and it’s energy consumers here in the UK that are propping up this rigged market with spiralling energy bills.”

EDF Renewables UK chief executive Matthieu Hue said: “We don’t recognise many of the statistics being quoted here. However, only this week, we have outlined details of four supply chain events to be held in Scotland at which Scottish companies will be introduced to the Tier 1 contractors for Neart na Gaoithe.”

He added: “We are committed to generating as much work as possible here in Scotland. The full extent of the benefit to the Scottish supply chain will become clear once all Tier 2 and Tier 3 contracts have been awarded.”


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