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Davie applauds Québec National assembly stance on shipbuilding strategy

2017-11-14

McKeil Marine's Evans Spirit  won the International Bulk Journal's 2016 Ship of the Year Award during the IBJ's Salute to Excellence in the Maritime Bulk Industry gala awards ceremony in London, UK on November 21.
"It's a fantastic way to closeout our 60th anniversary year: having a vessel named after our founder, Evans McKeil, win this prestigious international award," said Steve Fletcher, President and CEO of McKeil Marine.
Acquired by McKeil in 2015, the Evans Spirit is a cargo ship with the shallow draught characters of a tug and barge; however, compared to a tug-and-barge unit, she can transport approximately 40 per cent more cargo about 50 per cent faster on a very similar amount of fuel.  She is in service throughout the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River.
Evans Spirit was shortlisted for 2016 Ship of the Year competing with three other vessels: CS Bright, Mitsui OSK Lines, Japan;  Damen Shipyards, Netherlands; and MN Baroque, Swiss Marine, Switzerland. The award is presented to the owner, operator or builder of an outstanding individual bulk ship. Judged on operational efficiency, design innovation, safety and environmental protection, the Evans Spirit was selected as winner. (Photo Paul Beesley).

Davie Shipbuilding has applauded the Members of the National Assembly of Québec, and Premier Couillard specifically, for passing a unanimously adopted motion on Nov. 8 calling on the Trudeau government to amend the faltering National Shipbuilding Strategy to include Québec and save 1200 middle-class shipbuilding jobs.

"The federal government is going to invest almost $100 billion dollars over the next 20 to 30 years on its fleet renewal.  Québec represents 50% of Canada's shipbuilding capacity and 23% of Canada's tax base yet it is receiving less than 1% of federal spending on shipbuilding," said Alex Vicefield, Chairman, Davie Shipyard. in a press release.  "Today, Québec is at risk of losing a significant number of middle-class jobs due to bureaucratic intransigence and roadblocks within a broken procurement system, despite the clear and obvious need for Canada to urgently renew the entirety of its fleet."

On its Facebook page, Davie reiterated its strong concern, declaring: "At the end of this month, just before Christmas, up to 800 jobs will be abolished in Québec unless the government acts and follows the recommendations and requests of the Senate, the Defence Committee of Parliament and Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) to build a second military support ship of the Resolve class."

 

The first Resolve-class naval support ship, suited for combat and humanitarian operations, was launched by Davie at its Lévis shipyard on the St. Lawrence River in mid-October. It is the first large naval ship to be built in Canada in over two decades.

Built on time in two years and on budget under a contract valued at C$700 million, the Resolve project involved the major conversion of a 24,000-DWT German containership (MV Asterix). The vessel will undergo sea trials later this month in the Baie de Gaspé region before heading to Halifax for installation of RCN equipment prior to entering service.

"We are pleased that Premier Couillard and all parties within Québec's National Assembly are unanimously imploring Ottawa to include Canada's largest shipbuilder in its long-term shipbuilding strategy in order to add desperately needed capacity to renew the federal government's fleet in a more expeditious and cost effective manner," said Spencer Fraser, CEO Federal Fleet Services. "This is a critical step in securing the 1200 highly skilled jobs at Davie and supporting its 996 suppliers in the province of Québec and throughout Canada for the next 20-30 years." (Photo Davie)

 
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