Union warns of setback for shipyard workers if contract goes abroad

Fears are mounting that a billion-pound contract to build a new fleet of ships for the Royal Navy could go to a Japanese company. The move would trigger dismay in UK military circles and would be seen as a major setback for the country’s shipyards, struggling with dwindling order books.

It could also have political consequences as a decision to award the contract to an overseas firm might damage the government.

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