Call to secure BiFab’s longterm future

Nicola Stugeon at BiFab in Methil
Nicola Stugeon at BiFab in Methil

MSPs have called for more to be done to secure the future of BiFab.

Claire Baker, MSP for Mid Scotland and Fife, welcomed the Scottish Government’s intervention, which helped prevent BiFab from entering administration.

However, she said that more needed to be done to secure the long-term future of the yard.

She said: “We need to ensure that there is an improvement in the communication between BiFab, its workers, and the Government.

“We should not be finding out at the eleventh hour that the yard is under threat.

“We also know that the contract is due to be completed early next year.

“We need to see future contracts for the yard so workers can be confident in keeping these vital jobs and investment in Fife.”

Green MSP for Mid Scotland and Fife, Mark Ruskell, said that more needed to be done to make the renewables sector more competitive.

Mr Ruskell questioned Cabinet Secretary for Economy, Jobs and Fair Work, Keith Brown, at Holyrood.

“Everyone in the industry knows that a key way to secure and grow jobs in the offshore renewables supply chain is through cost reduction as part of an industrial strategy. The Cabinet Secretary mentioned the Low Carbon Infrastructure Investment Programme in his statement, but that is a fund that isn’t even open for the offshore renewables sector to bid into.

“The Scottish Government needs to ensure funds are specifically available to the offshore renewables supply chain to support cost reduction, so we can ensure that workers at BiFab have long term livelihoods rather than short term salvation.”

The call followed a visit by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon to the Methil yard, where she met with workers and thanked them for their recent efforts.

“This last week will have been a worrying time for BiFab’s workers and their families. Despite this, they have shown the utmost professionalism and dedication, agreeing to work throughout last week in order to ensure that the current contract continued.

“On behalf of the Scottish Government, I would like to thank them for their efforts.

“We will continue to work with BiFab, its commercial partners, and the trade unions on a long term viable future for the company to ensure that Bifab can play a prominent role in Scotland’s renewables industry.”