17 November 2021
RMT Press Office:
As MPs debate cash for influence scandal – Seafarers Union exposes former Shipping Minister’s lucrative second job
RATINGS UNION RMT today entered the furore over MPs second jobs by highlighting the case of former Shipping Minister, Nusrat Ghani MP who was paid £60,000 per year for 84 hours work (£714 per hour) for ship design company Artemis Technologies Ltd. Artemis has received significant DfT funding (see timeline in note to editors).
Since 2020, Artemis has been awarded £34m in Government funding for the development of zero emission vessels and infrastructure, including in the growing offshore wind sector. Combined grants of nearly £750,000 were made to Artemis through the Clean Maritime Demonstration Programme, an initiative set up when Ms Ghani was the Maritime Minister in the Department for Transport. Ms Ghani also chaired high profile events at COP26 in Glasgow for the international shipping industry.
RMT General Secretary Mick Lynch said:
“Seafarers working in the ferry and offshore sectors will be outraged to hear that an MP who was shipping minister until last year has sailed through the pandemic on £714 per hour from a second job in the maritime industry.
“It is also the case that while she was shipping minister the government presided over seafarers being paid below the minimum wage, a scandal which continues today.
“Nusrat Ghani’s role at Artemis Technologies appears to have put the company in pole position to receive millions in public funding. This appears to be a totally scandalous abuse of public office that sells out British seafarers and corrupts confidence in this government.”
Notes to editors
- Nusrat Ghani MP was Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Maritime and Aviation between January 2018 and February 2020.
- According to the entry in the Register of Members Interests Ms Ghani was Non-executive Chairman of the Belfast Consortium Supervisory Board of Artemis Technologies Ltd from 4 September 2020 to 4 September 2021, for which she was paid £60,000 for 7 hrs a month work.
- In her role as Shipping Minister, Ms Ghani visited Artemis Technologies’ Belfast facility in January 2019.
- In June 2020, as part of the Belfast Maritime Consortium, Artemis received a £33m grant from UK Research & Innovation’s Strength in Place Fund to develop zero-emission high-speed ferry.
- In September 2021, the winners of the Clean Maritime Demonstration Programme were announced by the DfT. Artemis were awarded nearly £750,000 for three projects.
- The Clean Maritime Demonstration Programme was created in July 2019, as part of the Government’s Clean Maritime Plan when Ms Ghani was Maritime Minister.
- Ms Ghani moderated the International Chamber of Shipping’s Shaping the Future of Shipping event on 6 November at COP26 in Glasgow.