According to a May 16 report from the Vancouver Sun, the Harper government is expected to release its long-term shipbuilding strategy in the coming weeks, creating two national centers to handle billions of dollars worth of contracts. The strategy could spark a high-stakes game pitting West Coast firms against East Coast companies in a winner-take-all contest. Vancouver-based Washington Marine Group and J.D. Irving on the East Coast will be asked to submit proposals to become the “center of excellence” for building combat ships such as the Arctic patrol vessels and the fleet of vessels that will eventually replace the navy’s Halifax-class frigates. Victoria Shipyards is owned by Washington Marine Group, as are Vancouver Drydock and Vancouver Shipyards. Another center for larger non-combat ships — including the navy’s proposed new supply vessels, the Joint Support Ships, as well as the coast guard’s polar icebreaker — is also in the works.
(Source: The Vancouver Sun)