Government of Canada to Acquire New Joint Support Ships

HALIFAX – The Hon­ourable Peter MacK­ay, Min­is­ter of Nation­al Defence, togeth­er with the Hon­ourable Rona Ambrose, Min­is­ter of Pub­lic Works and Gov­ern­ment Ser­vices Cana­da and Min­is­ter for Sta­tus of Women, and the Hon­ourable Tony Clement, Min­is­ter of Indus­try, today announced the Gov­ern­ment is mov­ing for­ward with pro­cure­ment of new Joint Sup­port Ships (JSS).

The new ships will be built in Cana­da and will be an impor­tant part of our Navy’s work at home and abroad, as part of the Cana­da First Defence Strat­e­gy.

“This gov­ern­ment is pro­vid­ing our men and women in uni­form the tools and equip­ment they need to do the jobs asked of them,” said Min­is­ter MacK­ay. “The Joint Sup­port Ship will be a new ves­sel for our Navy that bet­ter enables our sailors to pro­tect Cana­di­an coast­lines and sov­er­eign­ty, and sup­port inter­na­tion­al oper­a­tions.”

The Gov­ern­ment will acquire two sup­port ships, with the option to pro­cure a third. The JSS project rep­re­sents a total invest­ment by the Gov­ern­ment of Cana­da of approx­i­mate­ly $2.6 bil­lion. The pres­ence of a JSS increas­es the range and endurance of the Cana­di­an Navy, per­mit­ting it to remain at sea for sig­nif­i­cant peri­ods of time with­out going to shore.

The pri­ma­ry role of the JSS will include sup­ply of fuel, ammu­ni­tion, spare parts, food, and water. The JSS will also pro­vide a home base for the main­te­nance and oper­a­tion of heli­copters, a lim­it­ed sealift capa­bil­i­ty, and logis­tics sup­port to forces deployed ashore.

“As part of Canada’s Nation­al Ship­build­ing Pro­cure­ment Strat­e­gy, this announce­ment will lead to the cre­ation of long-term, skilled jobs for Cana­di­ans and will rein­vig­o­rate Canada’s marine indus­try, allow­ing it to com­pete on the world stage,” added Min­is­ter Ambrose.

“Today’s announce­ment will mean jobs for Cana­di­an work­ers, as ship­yards across the coun­try pro­duce ele­ments of this fleet,” said Min­is­ter Clement. “When all is said and done – we are begin­ning the process to build these ships, and that is great news for our Navy, for our Ship­build­ing indus­try, and for Cana­da.”

This first step in the replace­ment of the Navy’s cur­rent Aux­il­iary Oil­er Replen­ish­ment ves­sels, known as the def­i­n­i­tion phase, will involve the assess­ment of both new and exist­ing designs. Exist­ing ship designs are those already built, oper­at­ing, and meet key spe­cif­ic Cana­di­an require­ments.

A new ship design is being devel­oped by gov­ern­ment and indus­try offi­cials work­ing side-by-side. The select­ed ship design will be based on the best val­ue in terms of capa­bil­i­ty and afford­abil­i­ty, ensur­ing the suc­cess­ful deliv­ery of the JSS. The design is expect­ed to be avail­able in approx­i­mate­ly two years, at which time a Cana­di­an ship­yard, select­ed as part of the Nation­al Ship­build­ing Pro­cure­ment Strat­e­gy, will be engaged to com­plete the design of and build the Joint Sup­port Ships.

The Gov­ern­ment of Cana­da will ensure both val­ue for tax­pay­ers’ dol­lars and oppor­tu­ni­ties for Cana­di­an com­mu­ni­ties and the Cana­di­an marine indus­try. The Gov­ern­ment is com­mit­ted to get­ting the right equip­ment for the Cana­di­an Forces, at the right price for Cana­di­an tax­pay­ers, with the right ben­e­fits for Cana­di­an indus­try.

Depart­ment of Nation­al Defence, Kana­da