The Canadian government has initiated a process to add a third shipyard as a strategic partner under the National Shipbuilding Strategy (NSS) to build new icebreakers for the Coast Guard.
A total of six icebreakers are to be built by this shipyard, officials announced last week.
Through an “invitation to qualify”, the government would establish a short list of pre-qualified shipyards that will be eligible to submit a formal proposal to become the third strategic partner under the NSS, joining Irving Shipbuilding Inc. and Seaspan’s Vancouver Shipyards.
Interested suppliers have 15 days, starting August 2, to respond to the invitation to qualify, it was said.
On May 22, 2019, prime minister Justin Trudeau announced the government’s plan to invest C$15.7 billion to renew the Coast Guard fleet, with up to 16 multi-purpose vessels to be built at Seaspan’s Vancouver Shipyards and two new Arctic and Offshore Patrol Ships to be built at Irving Shipbuilding Inc.
“Demands on the Coast Guard will only grow as the impacts of climate change become more frequent and intense,” Jonathan Wilkinson, minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, said.
“By adding the new program icebreakers to renew the fleet, we are ensuring the women and men of the Canadian Coast Guard have the equipment they need to deliver icebreaking services in the Arctic, on the St. Lawrence waterway and on Canada’s East Coast.”