April 21, 2008: Irving Shipbuilding Wins Contract to Maintain Seven East Coast Frigates - Jobs for 600 Halifax Shipyard Workers at Peak

The contract will run from present day to 2020. HMCS Halifax is currently undergoing the first phase of the program – 17 weeks of docking and maintenance work. HMCS Charlottetown will be the next frigate to arrive at the shipyard in April 2009. HMCS Halifax will return to the shipyard in October 2010 for completion of the mid-life refit.

Specifically, the $549 million contract involves the following Frigate Work Periods for each of the seven (7) East Coast frigates (HMCS Halifax, HMCS Fredericton, HMCS Charlottetown, HMCS Toronto, HMCS St. John’s, HMCS Ville de Quebec, HMCS Montreal):

Docking Work Periods (DWP)
Approximately 17 weeks in duration
Approximately 75,000 person hours

Mid Life Refit (MLR)
Approximately 12 months in duration
Approximately 375,000 person hours

Engineering Changes
Approximately 10 weeks in duration
Work Period (ECWP) Approximately 25,000 person hours

In total the contract represents an estimated 3.3 million person hours of employment for Halifax Shipyard workers. The average mid-life refit will sustain 250 jobs representing various trades. At the peak of the frigate contract in 2012, up to 600 workers will be employed.

“HMCS Halifax is the most fitting backdrop for today’s good news,” said Jim Irving, President of Irving Shipbuilding. “It was the first frigate to be built by Irving Shipbuilding, and will mark 20 years since its launch on April 30th. It is most fitting that this ship be the first to return to her home port and namesake city to be upgraded by the skilled men and women of the Halifax Shipyard. This new contract recognizes Halifax's strong maritime legacy and longstanding relationship with the Canadian Navy.”

“We know these vessels,” Irving said. “Today, the Halifax remains amongst the most technologically advanced ships of its type in the world. Nine of the Canadian Patrol Frigates were built with pride – on time and on budget - by Irving Shipbuilding. We are very pleased to have won the contract to see their continued service at home and abroad through this mid-life refit. We are committed to delivering the same quality performance that brought these ships into service 20 years ago.”

“The men and women of the Halifax Shipyard have proven time and again their skill and commitment to deliver world-class work and service to the Navy,” said Karl Risser, President CAW Marine Workers Federation Local 1. “Our members are reassured that the Department of National Defense is committed to a steady workload at the shipyard with this new project that will employ up to 600 people at peak. In the same way that the building of these ships revitalized Canadian shipbuilding 25 years ago, today’s good news promises opportunity for our members through until 2020. We are committed to doing a quality job for the Navy.”

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CONTACT: Mary Keith
Irving Shipbuilding
(506) 632-5122
Cell (506) 650-8209