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CME dedicated to providing details on shipbuilding contract developments

Published by Stephanie Brooks on May 31, 2012

The federal government announced earlier this year the winners of the largest shipbuilding contracts in Canada’s history as part of its National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy (NSPS).

Irving Shipbuilding of Halifax was awarded the largest contract worth $25 billion for navy combat ships over the next 20 years. Seaspan Marine Corporation, in British Columbia, won the $8-billion contract for federal government civilian ships, including coastguard cutters. A smaller contract, worth $2 billion, will be awarded at a later stage. All contracts require 100 per cent Industrial Regional Benefits (IRBs).

In February 2012, umbrella agreements were signed with the selected shipyards (Irving and Seaspan). These agreements are long-term strategic sourcing arrangements that define the working relationships and administrative arrangements under which the government will negotiate fair and reasonable individual contracts.

The next step in the implementation of the contracts is the negotiating of individual project contracts. First in line will be the Arctic Offshore Patrol Ships in the combat package (Irving) and the Science Vessels for the Canadian Coast Guard in the non-combat package (Seaspan).

These contracts will create many opportunities for manufacturers across the country to grow their businesses. Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters (CME) is following the evolution of these contracts closely on your behalf.

If you are interested in becoming part of the shipbuilders’ supply chains, or to their main suppliers’ supply chains, CME can help you. We are connected directly with the companies that won the bids, as well as with the regional economic development agencies responsible for the implementation of all the IRB requirements.

How to stay informed:

1. Indicate your interest to CME by sending an e-mail directly to: with a copy of your corporate resume and interest in shipbuilding.

2. Register online as a potential supplier directly with the shipbuilders (Irving; Seaspan). These online supplier registration systems are very important as they will be used by these two companies to invite you to upcoming events organized across the country to connect businesses with potential suppliers.

3. Start looking at the level of Canadian content of your products using both parts and components, as well as labour costs.

4. In addition to Irving and Seaspan’s websites and online supplier registration systems, visit the following sites:

aNational Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy (Public Works and Government Services Canada)

b. Industrial Regional Benefits (Industry Canada)

c. Western Economic Diversification

d. Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

e. Canada Economic Development Agency for the Quebec Region, FedDev (Southern Ontario) and FedNor (Northern Ontario) do not yet provide specific online information on shipbuilding. However, if you are located in these areas, CME can put you in touch with the right people.

If you have questions or comments, please feel free to contact Martin Lavoie, CME’s directory of policy, directly at 613-238-8888 ext. 2229 or


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