To set the scene, the end of an earlier post (both types of ship are to be built by Seaspan, Vancouver–the icebreaker afterthe two Joint Support Ships which are supposed to start construction around 2016 with the CCG ship delivered 2021-22[hah!]):
Meanwhile the Canadian Coast Guard is getting only one new icebreaker, sometime next decade:
Just look at the age of the CCG’s fleet of larger icebreakers–the youngest was built in 1987, some 28 years ago. ‘Nuff said about this [Conservative] government’s commitment to core federal responsibilities.
Then consider the Navy’s Joint Support Ship program:
And then note what this Quebec shipbuilder–not part of the main National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy construction program–has been doing (see also “Comments”):
Finally there’s this:
Royal Canadian Navy to be given option to purchase interim supply ship
The Royal Canadian Navy will be able to eventually purchase the interim supply ship that it expects to start using around 2017.
As Defence Watch readers know, the ship, the Asterix, is at Davie shipyards in Quebec, ready to undergo conversion into an interim supply ship for the Royal Canadian Navy. The ship will help the RCN deal with the supply ship gap (Canada no longer has any) until the Joint Support Ships arrive in 2020-2021.
A deal still has to be reached between the federal government and Davie/Project Resolve (the firm providing such services to the RCN). But as previously reported on Defence Watch that is expected to be in place and ready to go by 2017.
Project Resolve will offer the services of Asterix until the second JSS is ready. But military and industry sources tell Defence Watch that after the service agreement runs its course, the Royal Canadian Navy will have the option – if so inclined – to buy Asterix.
Will it make that purchase of the interim supply ship? We should know closer to the end of the service contact.
Davie and Project Resolve had a proposal to offer Canada two such interim supply ships (Asterix has a sister ship which could also be converted).
But the Department of National Defence told Defence Watch recently that the RCN isn’t interested.
“A contract for the services of a second converted vessel is not being considered by the Royal Canadian Navy,” DND spokeswoman Ashley Lemire said [BUT WHEN THE NEW LIBERAL GOVERNMENT COMES IN?].
Nice image of the planned Davie ship (scroll down for more images and comments on the project at Milnet.ca):
Nice warm and fuzzy Arctic angle–and the Coast Guard really does need more than one new icebreaker. Plus who needs super-duperish Joint Support Ships with some onshore expeditionary military operations sustainment capability when the Liberal government is most unlikely to engage in those sorts of missions (the Davie ship could certainly do disaster relief)?
Everyone is happy. Jobs! Jobs! Jobs!