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Halifax (NS) – FEBRUARY 13, 2012 – As part of its Economic Action Plan, the Government of Canada is announcing today an Atlantic Shipbuilding Action Plan. This initiative, which focuses on maximizing opportunities for firms across the Atlantic region to participate in the $33-billion federal shipbuilding initiative announced late last year, was launched today in Dartmouth by the Honourable Bernard Valcourt, Minister of State for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency and La Francophonie and the Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence and Regional Minister for Nova Scotia.
“These shipbuilding procurements represent a historic opportunity that will generate economic growth and create jobs in the four Atlantic Provinces in rural and urban communities,” said Minister Valcourt. “With this action plan, we want to ensure that small and medium-sized enterprises throughout Atlantic Canada are in the best position to seize all opportunities related to these major procurements. This is a great occasion for us to foster a new generation of entrepreneurs who will acquire the expertise to compete on the world scene.”
“Work undertaken at Irving Shipbuilding’s Halifax shipyard will be sustained for decades and carries the real potential to radically transform the entire Atlantic economy. The shipbuilders of Atlantic Canada will create jobs, drive innovation and help build a world class industry,” explained Minister MacKay. “Through the Atlantic Shipbuilding Action Plan, our Government is helping Atlantic businesses understand and be part of the process and address such areas as innovation capacity, certification and workforce skills so they can compete as suppliers and sub-contractors.”
“Today marks another milestone in realizing the federal government’s commitment to build ships here at home,” said Jim Irving, CEO of Irving Shipbuilding Inc. “The new agreement we have embarked upon is a tribute to the skill and dedication of the proud tradition of shipbuilding in Atlantic Canada. We’re proud to be a part of this heritage and we understand our responsibility in building this industry and the next generation of shipbuilders into the future while delivering best value and quality to the men and women who serve.”
The Atlantic Shipbuilding Action Plan includes:
In delivering the Atlantic Shipbuilding Action Plan, the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency, in partnership with Irving Shipbuilding Inc., will host ‘Supplier Development Sessions’ in Bathurst and Moncton, New Brunswick; Summerside, Prince Edward Island; Truro and Shelburne, Nova Scotia and St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador between February 21 and March 12, 2012. These information sessions will provide Atlantic small and medium-sized enterprises with an overview of the shipbuilding initiative and the critical information they need to become suppliers with marine supply chains.
On October 19, 2011, the Government of Canada announced the selection of the two shipyards that will build Canada’s large vessels for the next 20 – 30 years. Vancouver Shipyards Co. Ltd. will build the non-combat vessels and Irving Shipbuilding Inc. will build the combat vessels. Smaller vessels will be competed amongst other Canadian shipyards. The strategy also calls for the repair, refit and maintenance of existing vessels.
On January 12, 2012, Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced that the Government of Canada has successfully reached an agreement in principle with both Irving Shipbuilding Inc. and Vancouver Shipyards Co. Ltd.
FOR BROADCAST USE:
As part of the Government’s Economic Action Plan to generate economic growth and create jobs, federal Ministers Bernard Valcourt and Peter MacKay were in Dartmouth today to unveil the Atlantic Shipbuilding Action Plan. This initiative focuses on maximizing opportunities for Atlantic Canadian firms to participate in the renewal of Canada’s naval fleet, including the construction of combat vessels by Irving Shipbuilding Inc. of Halifax, Nova Scotia.
With this Action Plan, the Government wants to ensure that businesses across Atlantic Canada are in the best position to seize all opportunities related to these shipbuilding procurements. The plan is designed to help small and medium sized businesses in Atlantic Canada address areas such as innovation capacity, certification and workforce skills.
Office of the Honourable Bernard Valcourt
Director, Public Affairs
ACOA Head Office
The Government of Canada’s Atlantic Shipbuilding Action Plan is a long-term strategy that will facilitate the integration of Atlantic Canadian small and medium-sized enterprises into the Government of Canada’s $33-billion naval fleet renewal, including the construction of the Navy’s combat vessels by Irving Shipbuilding Inc. of Halifax Nova Scotia.
The Plan will evolve as necessary to ensure it continues to address the ongoing needs of small and medium-sized enterprises in Atlantic Canada and their requirement for skilled workers. It will require a close collaboration with all four Atlantic provincial governments, Atlantic small and medium-sized enterprises s, industry associations, prime contractors, economic development organizations, educational and research institutes, and other federal departments.
The Atlantic Shipbuilding Action Plan is designed to:
1. Inform Small and Medium-sized Enterprises about the business opportunities
One of the Plan’s key objectives is to ensure that Atlantic Canadian small and medium-sized enterprises are fully informed of the process and requirements for accessing work.
Many companies in Atlantic Canada may not be aware they can take advantage of this opportunity, or may perceive they are too young or too small to be involved. These procurements are a unique opportunity to foster a new generation of entrepreneurs in all four Atlantic Provinces, to acquire the expertise to compete on the world scene.
The Action Plan includes:
2. Ensure access to Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency’s programs
To help maximize the benefits for the Atlantic region, the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency will use its flexible suite of tools and programming to proactively support the development of small and medium-sized enterprises to help them capitalize on economic development opportunities related to the shipbuilding procurements.
Programs such as the Atlantic Innovation Fund, the Business Development Program, the International Business Development Agreement, the Innovative Communities Fund and the Community Futures Program (Community Business Development Corporations) can facilitate, among other activities:
3. Develop a skilled labour force
This Atlantic Shipbuilding Action Plan also aims to engage the four Atlantic provincial governments, universities and community colleges in developing skills and labour force planning and research.
Atlantic Canada is home to an extensive network of world class universities and community colleges that have proven instrumental in working with industry to ensure that required education and training is locally available. In some cases, companies work directly with community colleges to design courses. As well, since this is a 20 to 30 year strategy, the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency will want to work with its partners in addressing labor supply issues, gaps and trends.
4. Organize and deliver supplier development sessions
The Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency and J.D. Irving are scheduling supplier development sessions across the region to provide Atlantic small and medium-sized enterprises with information on the shipbuilding initiative and marine supply chains. These sessions are being held as follows:
Bathurst, New Brunswick
Tuesday, February 21, 2012
13:00 – 17:30
Moncton, New Brunswick
Thursday, February 23, 2012
08:00 – 12:30
Summerside, Prince Edward Island
Monday, February 27, 2012
08:00 – 12:30
Truro, Nova Scotia
Friday, March 2, 2012
Glengary Best Western Hotel
08:00 – 12:30
St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador
Monday, March 5, 2012
08:00 – 12:30
Shelburne, Nova Scotia
Monday, March 12, 2012
Osprey Arts Centre
08:00 – 12:30
570 Queen Street, 3rd Floor
PO Box 578
Fredericton, New Brunswick
(Courier Address: E3B 6Z6)
General Enquiries: 506-452-3184
Toll Free: 1-800-561-4030
Newfoundland and Labrador
John Cabot Building, 11th Floor
10 Barter's Hill
PO Box 1060 STN C
Newfoundland and Labrador
(Courier Address: A1C 6M1)
General Enquiries: 709-772-2751
Toll Free: 1-800-668-1010
1801 Hollis Street, Suite 600
PO Box 2284 STN C
Halifax, Nova Scotia
(Courier Address: B3J 3N4)
General Enquiries: 902-426-6743
Toll Free: 1-800-565-1228
Prince Edward Island
Royal Bank Building, 3rd floor
100 Sydney Street
PO Box 40
Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island
(Courier Address: C1A 1G3)
General Enquiries: 902-566-7492
Toll Free: 1-800-871-2596