BAE Systems announced in the Autumn that it was to close one of its three UK shipyards and would say which one by the end of the year.
It has two on the Clyde, at Govan and Scotstoun and one in Portsmouth on the south coast.
As we have said before, the decision taken will be an indication of BAE’s and the UK government’s view of the likely result of the October 2014 independence referendum.
Had they considered a ‘Yes’ vote a serious possibility, they would have had to have kept Portsmouth open but inside information indicates that Portsmouth will close.
But there is a hedge.
The company has been asked by the UK Government not to shut it down but to keep it in a state where it can be reactivated should Scotland choose independence.
The formal decision is to be made known in the next few days.