Vancouver Shipyards gets $65.4M for vessel contracts

Funding under National Shipbuilding Policy for science vessel and joint support ships.

VANCOUVER — Vancouver Shipyards will receive $65.4 million under the federal government’s National Shipbuilding Policy to build a scientific support vessel and Joint Support Ships (JSS).

The two new contracts allow Seaspan’s Vancouver Shipyards Co. Ltd. to initiate early discussions with potential suppliers and to purchase material and equipment such as propulsion systems, scientific equipment, generators, and other specialized parts to build the Offshore Oceanographic Science Vessel (OOSV) for the Canadian Coast Guard and support ships for the Royal Canadian Navy.

The OOSV contract, valued at up to $30 million, is the second project in the non-combat package after the Offshore Fisheries Science Vessel (OFSV), which began construction in June 2015. The 86-metre-long OFSV with a capacity for a 33-person crew and up to 23 scientists, is to be completed in 2018-2019.

The $35.4 million JSS contract will also go towards the selection of equipment such as propulsion systems, generators, switchboards and other specialized parts need to finalize the design of the ships.

The Joint Support Ships are part of the National Shipbuilding Strategy’s non-combat vessels package, with an estimated project budget of $2.3 billion and will be built after the OFSV and the OOSV. The first JSS will be delivered and operational in 2020. The second ship is to be delivered and operational in late 2021.

These vessels will replace the Royal Canadian Navy’s Auxiliary Oiler Replenishment vessels, Protecteur Class, which were recently taken out of service.

The JSS will allow Naval Task Groups to remain at sea for long periods of time without going to shore for replenishment. They’ll provide fuel, ammunition, spare parts, food, and water to Canadian and allied vessels. The ships will also support deployed forces with modern medical and dental care facilities, and will have helicopter repair capabilities.

The National Shipbuilding Strategy is a 30-year initiative to renew the fleets of the Royal Canadian Navy and the Canadian Coast Guard.

Vancouver Shipyards has so far awarded $211 million in contracts to suppliers across the country.

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