VICTORIA, British Columbia — International companies see the potential for billions of dollars in service support contracts under Canada’s fleet-rebuilding program.
Canada launched a CAN $30 billion (US $28 billion) program to build new warships, supply vessels and icebreakers over the next 20 years. But company representatives say an equal amount, if not more, will be spent on long-term in-service support (ISS) contracts for the new ships. Those contracts will see companies hired to maintain the vessels for 30 to 40 years.
The Canadian government is moving to establish such contracts even before the ships are built, say industry representatives.
The first will be a combined ISS contract for the Canadian Navy’s fleet of new Arctic offshore patrol ships and its future supply vessels, known as joint support ships.
“This procurement is at a planning stage with industry consultation currently ongoing,” said Annie Trepanier, a spokeswoman for Pubic Works and Government Services Canada, the department overseeing the procurement process. “Current plans are to release a request for proposal [to industry] later in 2015.”
The contract, which will cover a 35-year period, is expected to be awarded in 2017.
Babcock Canada, a subsidiary of the UK’s Babcock, is interested in bidding.
Nicholas Avellaneda, a spokesman for Babcock Canada, said the firm hopes to use its ISS expertise, which it has already demonstrated to the Royal Canadian Navy on the service’s Victoria-class submarines, to win in-service support contracts for the future surface fleets.
“We can augment what we have here in Canada with an extensive reach-back to what we have in the United Kingdom,” he explained.