Its very sad to see such a screw-up happening for shipyard that has tried its best to be innovative and give sub-assembly work to shipyards in Poland that have struggled over the years.
Dispite this setback Irish Ferries continue to keep their purchasing power in europe unlike Stena and DFDs.
Hopefully the second car ferry project will be delivered on time without any of the drama WB Yeats has attracted.
I believe there is scope for a lot more orders from FSG , provided they learn the hard lessons from WB Yeats fitting out and late delivery.
To be honest FSG's model of subcontracting superstructures has been well proven for over a decade. The difference this time is the scale of the project and the involvement of another sub-contractor to complete the centre module (which is the one rumoured to have the issues as well). Irish Ferries will have gotten this vessel "cheap" simply because it is the first vessel of this size the yard has completed and they need an order to prove themselves to be able to secure further (more profitable) orders - of which they have one for Brittany Ferries and two for TT Line Pty. Its not unusual for the first vessel of a type to be sold "cheap" by a yard just to secure that all important first order. Similar will have happened with Stena at AVIC I'm sure (and the more they order, the more profit will be made on each unit by the yard).
As for the comment about Stena and DFDS not investing in Europe, name a yard in Europe capable of producing that many vessels of that size in that time scale? DFDS has ordered six 6,700lm roro's which will be delivered within 4 years of the first order being placed, plus two 4500lm RoPax's from a different yard for delivery in 2021 ordered earlier this year. Stena have eight 3100lm+ Ro-pax's scheduled to be delivered by the end of 2022. Its almost two and a half years since WB YEATS was ordered and she hasn't even had trials!
European suppliers are also playing a huge part in those projects, especially the Stena one (I know less about the DFDS ones as I haven't been following them closely). ICG have ordered two one off vessels (though based on a modular design and with many similarities I'm told) with a huge amount of financial (loan) assistance from the EU. DFDS and Stena have ordered three series designs with their own resources. The ICG ships are essentially partially financed by the European Investment Bank, while the regional government in Germany has also provided assistance to the yard as well. I doubt that EU money would have been available for an order placed in China since it is EU tax payers money that is funding ICG's cheap finance! Loans of EUR 155m at less than 1.8% interest is a pretty big incentive to place an order in Europe if you ask me!
(Edit: should add that I’m not criticising ICG here, just pointing out we are talking about two entirely different situations here and that ICG May have an incentive to build in the EU that the others do not)
I've been hearing November for Yeats in service all being well, but there have also been some suggestions that it could be January 2019. ICG's prediction of "late 2018" doesn't inspire confidence, but better than naming another specific date to be missed! As for whats causing the delay, the large patch of primer on her port side where the aft and centre section meet is interesting..... Any issue with the prefabrication is going to take an inordinate amount of time to put right compared to the original prefabrication.