To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, pursuant to the Answer of 20 September 2021 to Question 49967 on Fleet Solid Support Ships: Procurement, for what reason the Government is unable to disclose whether the prime contractor for the Fleet Solid Support Ship contract must be a UK-based company.
23 September 2021
Further to the above questions from the Rt Hon. Gentleman and my commitment to write to him about FSS contracts following Defence Oral Questions held on Monday 20 September:
Competitive Procurement Phase
Four procurement contracts have been awarded each for £5 million to develop a proposal for FSS. Contracts have been placed through the following lead companies representing the four consortia:
- Larsen & Toubro (of the Larsen & Toubro consortium, also including Leidos Innovations and Gibbs & Cox)
- Serco (of the Serco / Damen consortium, also including Damen)
- Navantia (of the Team Resolute consortium, also including Harland & Wolff and BMT)
- Babcock (of the Team UK consortium, also including BAE Systems)
Whilst the contracting party may be UK or non-UK the basis of the contract is that the work will be undertaken by the relevant consortium members that responded to and prequalified against the MOD’s criteria for competition entry. Every consortium has a UK contingent or is exclusively UK.
A contract will subsequently be awarded for the manufacturing phase where the winning bidder will refine their concept design prior to the build of FSS ships. The Government has made clear that a substantial part of the build will be conducted in the UK, there is a requirement to integrate all ships in a UK shipyard. In addition Social Value will represent a significant proportion of the evaluation of the bids. The contract will be awarded to a UK firm acting solely or as part of a consortium. The exact form that the contract will take is yet to be determined. Similarly the key sub-contracting roles beneath those primarily responsible for delivery will be determined as part of the award of the contract also helping to ensure that Government objectives are met.