Shortage of ships for charter could force carriers to shelve new services

By Mike Wackett

An acute shortage in the availability of charter tonnage could force carriers to shelve their plans to launch new liner services this summer. And a big hike in daily hire rates for container ships that do become available, combined with spiralling fuel prices, will force a rethink on the economics of the planned new and enhanced ventures. In particular, the hitherto workhorses of new service links, the classic panamax ships of 4,000-5,300 TEUs are “virtually sold out” according to the latest report from Alphaliner. (more…)

Grimaldi’s Grande Halifax christened in Halifax

By Tom Peters

The massive, green decks of Grande Halifax were glistening on a cool May day in Halifax Harbour. It was a rare occasion in the Nova Scotia port as representatives of the marine industry and government gathered for the christening of the Grimaldi Group owned vessel. The christening of a commercial hasn’t occurred in Halifax in several years. (more…)

Davie pushing Ottawa on icebreakers

By Mark Cardwell

The Chairman of the Europe-based company that owns the Davie shipyard continues to publicly push and prod Ottawa to accept his company’s proposal to supply Canada with four leased icebreakers that are currently sitting idle in Florida.

“Winter is coming,” Alex Vicefield told Canadian Sailings from his home in Monaco in late October. “Canada is facing an acute icebreaker shortage that is putting at risk the wintertime business at ports on the St. Lawrence River. “We have provided Ottawa with a quick and affordable solution to the problem.  We could have at least one of these vessels on station within two weeks, with the others to follow soon after.  But we’re not hearing anything.”


New Brunswick awards ferry contract to Groupe Océan

Groupe Océan is proud to announce that the government of New Brunswick awarded it a contract for the construction of a cable ferry. With a capacity of 15 cars and 100 passengers, this 25-metre ship will be added to the provincial fleet of ferries, and used on a high-volume run. She is expected to be launched next fall. The new vessel will be constructed at a cost of approximately $6.5 million.

This contract will strengthen the relaunch of the Naval Center in Bas Caraquet which was initiated in 2016/2017, and whose principal present activity is finalization of the construction of a floating drydock. Employment at the site has returned to pre-reorganization levels, and is expected to rise further. The Bas Caraquet facilities have increased Groupe Océan’s capabilities, and are helping to increase expertise in shipbuilding and ship repair in New Brunswick.

Jacques Tanguay, CEO of Groupe Océan said that “Since Groupe Océan established itself in Bas-Caraquet, we have worked to create high-quality jobs in the region and to develop the expertise capable of taking on contracts such as the one announced today. We are proud that this ferry will be built and used here in New Brunswick.”

Project Resolve resolving a Canadian naval capability gap

Project Resolve resolving a Canadian naval capability gap

K. Joseph Spears

Canada’s Navy was founded in 1910 and has a long and illustrious history through two world wars, the Cold War and into the 21st century, a century which has seen a war on terrorism and piracy. In a complex threat environment, navies have become increasingly important and relevant globally. Over time, Canada’s Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) pioneered a variety of naval capabilities including the use of large helicopters from small warships, in support of antisubmarine warfare. Canada’s RCN is an integral part of NATO and works closely with allied partners around the world in support of counterterrorism and force projection maintaining the security of global maritime shipping, which is the foundation of international commerce.


Nova Scotia pulling together to train women and minorities for non-traditional careers in shipbuilding

By Tom Peters

Irving Shipbuilding’s Centre of Excellence (CEC), in partnership with Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC), private industry and other organizations, is bringing a new, diverse group of workers into its shipbuilding hall. In June of this year, 15 women, welders or metal fabricators, graduated from Nova Scotia Community College and were hired by Irving Shipbuilding. A second group of 20 women has completed the 14-week Women Unlimited Partnership program, in preparation for the two-year diploma trades program which begins in September.