Nova Scotia Welcomes Beginning of AOPS Design Phase
Irving Shipbuilding and the Canadian government marked the start of the design phase for the Arctic Offshore Patrol Ships (AOPS), moving Nova Scotia closer to the 30 years of good jobs shipbuilding will bring to the province.
The AOPS definition contract allows detailed modeling and design of the vessels to begin.
Premier of Nova Scotia Darrell Dexter on March 7 said:
“Congratulations to the shipyard employees for their hard work to achieve this important milestone. Nova Scotia is proud to be Canada’s shipbuilder and we will do everything we can to ensure Irving Shipbuilding delivers the best ships for our Canadian military, on time.”
Irving Shipbuilding also reaffirmed its commitment to creating and maintaining good jobs in Nova Scotia, and in Canada, to meet its 30-month deadline to cut steel in 2015.
“I’m pleased to hear that this contract will be managed by a growing team in Nova Scotia, and that 80 per cent of the forecasted jobs in this definition contract will be in Canada, and primarily in Nova Scotia. It means we are developing experience and growing skills right here at home,” said Premier Dexter.
Irving Shipbuilding will begin tendering for $300-million in infrastructure upgrades at the Halifax Shipyard, to ensure Halifax Shipyard is ready to build the AOPS vessels in 2015, as well as the larger combat ships currently scheduled to begin production in 2020. The build phase for each of these projects is where most of the jobs will be created.
In Nova Scotia, work is underway to increase technical training and apprenticeship opportunities, to improve employment supports for those who need to access training, and to help businesses invest in training, innovation and productivity. The province will continue to work with its partners to host supplier development information sessions to ensure local companies are getting ready with the right certifications and requirements to make the most of the shipbuilding opportunity.
The province recently released a study prepared by Duke University that analyzed the range of activities needed to create, produce, deliver and maintain the arctic offshore patrol ships and polar icebreaker and research vessels. It also shows how local companies could become suppliers to the shipbuilding programs in Nova Scotia and British Columbia.
“We’re a little over one year into a 30-year project, and I’m excited by the progress we’ve already made,” said Premier Dexter. “Nova Scotia is built to build ships, and people here are ready to turn the corner toward prosperity.”
The federal shipbuilding contracts will provide work for the next 30 years and, based on the economic study by the Conference Board of Canada, are estimated to generate 11,500 direct and indirect jobs in Nova Scotia during peak production.
Press Release, March 15, 2013; Image: forces.gc