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Navy problems show procurement flawed

Navy problems show procurement flawed

Design and contract difficulties experienced by the Navy in the construction of its planned multimillion-dollar multi-role ship confirm the flawed capital procurement processes of the Labour Government, says National’s shadow Attorney-General, Richard Worth.

“Disclosures that the Navy was not able to guarantee to the Ministry of Defence as late as two months ago that the ship would be fit for purpose are deeply disturbing.

“This ship was to be a centrepiece of the new Defence Force configuration planned by the Labour Government.

“From the outset, National has expressed concern about this contract.

“Although Tennix, of Australia, was the head contractor, the actual building of the ship was subcontracted to a European company, Merwede.

“This company was at the time listed for sale by its parent. So New Zealand entered into a contract knowing there was a doubt as to the ability of the builder to perform.

“But it is worse than that. The design team of Merwede was bankrupted.

“Now, the contract has been suspended on the basis that the roll-on/roll-off ship may be unsafe and is unstable.

“The areas of stability in question relate to ‘particular loading conditions, design and scantling drafts and maintenance of watertight integrity during certain evolutions’.

“The Minister of Defence has continued to show a lack of concern. A more informed Minister would be truly worried. He must come clean on the current position with this contract,” Mr Worth says.


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