The job losses at CS Wind at Machrihanish, Campbeltown, were raised by Highlands and Islands Labour MSP, Rhoda Grant, at First Minister’s Questions today.
Mrs Grant said: “The First Minister will be aware of the announcement by CS Wind that they are reducing their workforce in Campbeltown by three quarters.
“This is a devastating blow for the workforce and also for the whole country because this is the only manufacturer of wind turbines in Scotland.
“Can I ask the First Minister what steps she has taken to protect these jobs and assist the workforce in this difficult time?”
Nicola Sturgeon thanked Mrs Grant for raising the issue, admitting that it will be an “exceptionally difficult time for workers who have been issued with redundancy notices.
The First Minister said the Energy Minister had spoken with the company’s management a couple of days ago to discuss the reasons behind the move. Ms Sturgoen said that the Scottish Government believed it was “a gap in the order book” not about its future prospects or long term sustainability. She added that the Government and Highlands and Islands Enterprise were committed to doing all they can to mitigate the impact of the redundancy notices and dialogue continued with the company to support it to ensure its long their sustainability and success.
Afterwards Mrs Grant said: “This is a huge blow for this area as it is understood that 73 out of 94 jobs are to go.
“The amount of manufacturing work awarded to Scottish renewable manufacturers remains too low for a country which has a huge number of windfarms, especially in the Highlands and Islands.
“Promises of employment in the low-carbon and renewable energy (LCRE) economy has not translated into the jobs boom promised and there’s been a failure of an industrial policy to ensure that workers, businesses and Government in Scotland benefit from Scotland’s natural resources.”