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Davie to share in Canadian naval $7 billion contract

2018-11-02

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).

The federal government has announced it plans to award contracts worth $7 billion to three shipyards for maintenance and repair work on 12 Royal Canadian Navy frigates. The award notices for work slated to begin in 2021 were extended to Irving Shipbuilding in Halifax, Seaspan Victoria Shipyards and Davie Shipbuilding in Lévis, Québec.

The contracts are aimed at maintaining Canada's existing 12 Halifax-class frigates until the end of their operational life, estimated at another 20 years.

Irving and Davie are expected to handle the work on the seven vessels of the Atlantic fleet, while Seaspan is to work on the five ships assigned to the Pacific fleet.

"We recognize that Davie did a great job with the Asterix," Prime Minister Trudeau said in reference to the navy supply ship that Davie converted last year,

The Ottawa authorities had faced strong pressure from the Québec government to send more business to struggling Davie.

Davie had a workforce of 1,500 during the conversion of the Asterix, and sought in vain a contract to produce a second resupply vessel.

The contract share was welcomed at Davie where hundreds of workers had been laid off in the past year. But shipyard spokesman Frederik Boisvert noted that since the frigate work does not kick off until 2021, Davie still faces serious challenges. "It is going to be hard to maintain (workforce levels) because of the weak volume of contracts we have." Photo: Davie

 
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