UK's Johnson reveals £4bn shipbuilding sector investment

Prime minister says he wants Britain to be considered a global power in building ships

FILE PHOTO: Harland and Wolff cranes Samson (top) and Goliath are seen at the  Belfast shipyard, February 12, 2003. Once tens of thousands of men  thronged the narrow streets of east Belfast each day on their way to  work at the shipyard. REUTERS/Paul McErlane/File Photo
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British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has unveiled government plans to spend £4 billion ($5.27bn) on investment in the UK's regional shipbuilding sector.

Mr Johnson will unveil the the plans during a visit to Merseyside's dockyards in the the north of England on Thursday.

The government says the multibillion-pound investment will galvanise shipyards and suppliers across the UK, delivering a pipeline of more than 150 new naval and civil vessels across the country for the next 30 years.

The Ministry of Defence will publish its refreshed National Shipbuilding Strategy on Thursday, outlining how the government will support UK shipyards across the nation to train workers and create high-quality jobs.

Downing Street says the strategy also builds on the UK’s increased support for European defence capability "in the face of rising Russian aggression".

One considered a naval superpower, Britain's shipbuilding industry went into relative decline after the Second World War.

Mr Johnson will say on his trip to Merseyside that he wants to the UK to return to its former status.

“Shipbuilding has been in our blood for centuries and I want to ensure it remains at the heart of British industry of generations to come," early released comments from his speech say.

“The National Shipbuilding Strategy will transform this important and crucial industry, creating jobs, driving technology development and upskilling the shipbuilders of tomorrow, ensuring we are levelling up across every dock, port and shipyard in the UK.

“This will ensure the UK is rightly seen as a shipbuilding power across the world.”

The UK’s historic shipbuilding industry supports 42,600 jobs across the UK, from Cornwall to Belfast and Govan, and contributes more than £2.8bn to the economy.

Updated: March 10, 2022, 12:01 AM