Halifax, NS, January 12, 2012: Today Irving Shipbuilding welcomed the Right Honourable Stephen Harper, Prime Minister of Canada, the Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of Defence for Canada, as well as senior representatives of the Royal Canadian Navy, to their Halifax Shipyard facility to mark the successful conclusion of an agreement in principle to build Canada’s combat vessels under the National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy (NSPS).
“The agreement in principle reached today with Irving Shipbuilding Inc. is a milestone of our Government’s National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy – a strategy that will mean jobs and economic growth for the country, stability for the industry, and vital equipment for our men and women in uniform,” said Prime Minister Stephen Harper.
Production on four of nine Hero-Class Mid-Shore Patrol Vessels for the Canadian Coast Guard paused momentarily as the announcement was made in the shipyard’s fabrication hall, with four vessels in various stages of production acting as the backdrop.
“Today we celebrate the first of many milestones in realizing the federal government’s commitment to build ships here at home. We thank Prime Minister Harper for delivering the National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy and selecting the successful yards through a rigorous merit based process,” said Jim Irving, CEO of Irving Shipbuilding. “We also want to thank Minister MacKay who has been a steadfast champion of the people at this yard and a Build in Canada approach for federal vessels.”
“To the Province, Premier Dexter and the community - we appreciate the unwavering support. You’ve been with us every step of the way! Our management team and workers made it happen, rightfully earning the work. These new contracts are the best tribute to their skill and dedication. Canada was determined to find the best shipbuilders and we are proud to be the team that will deliver best value and quality to the men and women who serve,” Irving said.
Steve Durrell, President Irving Shipbuilding said, “We are so fortunate that our owners, the Irving family, saw the potential of our workers, our experience and our facilities and chose to invest heavily in infrastructure, technology and people since acquiring Halifax Shipyard in 1994. That investment totals about $90 million over the past five years alone. One of the most important demonstrations of that commitment was their choice to build their own vessels right here at Irving Shipbuilding when others chose to build offshore. That ability to continue to build experience and maintain skills is, we believe, a big reason we were selected to build the next generation Navy fleet.”