A Minister has outlined why Royal Navy warships must, by virtue of national security, be built in the United Kingdom.
The information came to light after a written question was submitted in Parliament.
Jeremy Quin, Minister of State for the Ministry of Defence, recently said in response to a written question.
“For national security reasons, the UK needs to maintain a shipbuilding enterprise with the industrial capabilities to design, manufacture, integrate, modify and support current and future naval ships (both Royal Navy and Royal Fleet Auxiliary).
Overall, the MOD considers that a regular drumbeat of design and manufacturing work in UK yards is needed to maintain the industrial capabilities important for UK national security and to drive efficiencies which will reduce longer-term costs in the shipbuilding portfolio.”
Other than procurement activity undertaken during the World Wars, the UK has not had a complex warship built outside of the UK since the start of the 20th century at least.
All of the Royal Navy’s new complex warships are being built in UK shipyards and the UK Government says it remains committed to utilising the strengths of UK industry in this specialist and complex area.
There’s also the matter of contracts using US technology, defence contractors that work with items or technology of US origin are also covered by undertakings given in accordance with the US International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR), under which any change to an existing US export licence requires US State Department approval.
Simply put, the UK wants to retain the ability to build its own warships and to keep sensitive technology somewhat secret, that’s it.