Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - s.s. “Irish Willow” and s.s. “Irish Rose.”

asked the Minister for Industry and Commerce if he will state the amounts accepted by Irish Shipping, Ltd., as the estimated cost for the construction of the s.s.Irish Willow and the s.s. Irish Rose, giving the amount for each vessel separately; the contract period for each vessel; and the final actual cost of construction for each vessel, and the time actually required for their construction.

asked the Minister for Industry and Commerce if he will state whether or not tenders were submitted by the Liffey Dockyard Co., Ltd. for the constructing of the s.s.Irish Willow and s.s. Irish Rose for Irish Shipping., Ltd., and if tenders were submitted whether such tenders were on a time and material basis or for a firm contract price; and what contract period was specified in the tenders; finally, whether the tenders of the Liffey Dockyard Co., Ltd., were the lowest tenders and, if not, the amount by which they exceeded the lowest tenders.

I propose, with the permission of the Ceann Comhairle, to take Questions Nos. 19 and 20 together.

I am informed that orders for the two vessels named in the questions were placed in 1946 by Irish Shipping, Ltd.; that tenders were submitted by the Liffey Dockyard Co., Ltd.; and that before accepting tenders from outside the country, Irish Shipping, Ltd., examined very fully the question of having the vessels built at an Irish shipyard, but at the time no Irish yard was in a position to tender at reasonably competitive prices and with prospects of early delivery.

I do not consider it desirable to give the details for which the Deputy has asked as it is not the practice to disclose such particulars in respect of commercial undertakings.

Can the Minister say, without giving the actual details whether the tenders submitted by the Liffey Dockyard Company were submitted on a firm contract price and if the contract was subsequently placed abroad on a time and material basis?

My information is that the tender submitted was not a firm contract price—that there were conditions attached to the final contract.

Can the Minister state whether the same alternatives were offered to the Irish yard?

I am informed that they were.