Industry Canada

Industry Canada

September 15, 2010 08:00 ET

Government of Canada Delivering Long-Term Jobs and Economic Opportunities for Nova Scotia

LUNENBURG, NOVA SCOTIA--(Marketwire - Sept. 15, 2010) - On behalf of The Honourable Tony Clement, Minister of Industry, the Honourable Gail Shea, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, visited Composites Atlantic Limited of Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, an aerospace engineering and manufacturing firm that is producing composite fuselage panels for the F-35 Lightning II aircraft as part of a contract awarded under the Joint Strike Fighter program. At the facility, Minister Shea highlighted the economic benefits created in Nova Scotia as a result of Canada's participation in the Joint Strike Fighter program, the single largest fighter aircraft program in history.

"The future looks bright for our aerospace and defence industry here in Nova Scotia," said Minister Shea. "As part of the Joint Strike Fighter program, contracts stemming from the F-35 aircraft are translating into highly skilled, well-paying jobs for the people of this province."

The economic benefits of this program will be felt across Canada, from Vancouver to Halifax and many communities in between, including Bagotville, Calgary, Cold Lake, Montréal, Toronto, Winnipeg, and many more. This investment is needed now to ensure the long-term strength of our world-class aerospace industry.

The Joint Strike Fighter program provides an unprecedented opportunity for Canadian firms such as Composites Atlantic to take part in the global supply chains that will define the aerospace and defence sectors for the next 40 years. Canada joined the Joint Strike Fighter program in 1997 in anticipation of the Canadian Forces' need to replace its current fleet of CF-18s. To date, Canada has invested approximately $168 million in the Joint Strike Fighter program; since 2002, this investment has led to more than $350 million in contracts with more than 60 Canadian companies, research laboratories and universities. An example of additional upcoming work includes the recently announced Avcorp contract, which has a value of up to $500 million.

Through the Joint Strike Fighter program, Canadian companies such as Composites Atlantic will be guaranteed access to competitive opportunities in the Joint Strike Fighter partnership, including an estimated $12 billion in potential industrial opportunities for work on the Joint Strike Fighter platform. Purchasing the F-35 aircraft now ensures that Canadian companies can access high-value, long-term Joint Strike Fighter work by allowing them enough lead time to ramp up for the production, sustainment and follow-on development phases of the program.

The development of the F-35 is the largest cooperative program of its kind since World War II. This United States-led partnership includes Canada, Australia, Denmark, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Turkey and the United Kingdom. As a partner nation, Canada is in a position to secure high-value work, such as the manufacturing of composite panels at Composites Atlantic, on the entire Joint Strike Fighter program.

"This contract is significant, and the world-class composite fuselage panel manufacturing that is being done for the F-35s, right here at Lunenburg, will reinforce Composites Atlantic's place in the global aerospace industry," said Maurice Guitton, President and CEO. "We are proud to be working on this contract and look forward to future opportunities that the Joint Strike Fighter program will present over the next 40 years."

Composites Atlantic Limited has been operating in Lunenburg since 1989, providing world-class expertise and products to the global aerospace, defence, space and industrial business sectors. With over 350 highly trained staff, Composites Atlantic is proud to name most of the world's major aerospace companies, including, since 1997, Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman, as long-standing customers. The firm began delivering to Northrop Grumman under the F-35 Lightning II program in April 2009. When reaching its projected full production rates in 2015 and beyond, this contract will have added a total of over 15 new jobs at the company's facilities in Lunenburg, as well as offering opportunities to expand the company's scope of work on the F-35 Lightning II.

For more information on the Joint Strike Fighter program, please visit the National Defence website (


Industrial Participation — Joint Strike Fighter Program

The Government of Canada's participation in the Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) program brings significant benefits to Canada. As a global program, it positions Canadian industry at the start of a multi-year, multi-billion dollar program with an international market. Further, the government's long-term investment in this aircraft development program provides Canada's aerospace and defence industries with an unprecedented opportunity to be a part of the JSF global supply chain, advancing their technologies, while bringing jobs and sustained economic benefits to regions across Canada.

Canada joined the JSF program in 1997, in anticipation of the need for the Canadian Forces to replace its current fleet of CF-18s, which is expected to reach the end of its operational life in the 2017–20 time frame.

The development of the F-35 is the largest cooperative program of its kind since World War II. This United States–led partnership includes Canada, Australia, Denmark, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Turkey and the United Kingdom. As a partner nation, Canada is in a position to secure high-value work on the JSF program.

Industrial Participation

Since 1997, Canada has been involved in the development, design and initial production phases of the JSF program. In 2006, the Government of Canada signed the Production, Sustainment and Follow-on Development Phase Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). In this MOU, the partners agreed to implement a best-value approach to maximize industrial benefits and the affordability of the JSF program for partner countries.

Because Canada is a member country, Canadian companies are among those eligible to bid on the work packages that flow from this project. Canadian companies must offer competitive technologies at competitive prices to be successful on the JSF program.

Industry Canada has signed industrial participation plans with each of the JSF prime contractors (Lockheed Martin, Pratt & Whitney, and the General Electric Rolls-Royce Fighter Engine Team). These industrial participation plans meet the Government of Canada's objective of encouraging foreign industry to establish long-term relationships with Canadian industry. Industry Canada continues to work cooperatively with National Defence to identify and pursue opportunities with JSF prime contractors.

In addition to providing access to competitive opportunities, the industrial participation plans identify strategic industrial opportunities for Canada that build on Canadian strengths in the areas of landing gear maintenance, composite manufacturing, hard metals machining and complex structure assembly.

Benefits to Canada

Canada has made payments of approximately $168 million to the JSF program; and, since 2002, this investment has led to more than $350 million in contracts with more than 60 Canadian companies, research laboratories and universities. Canada has already seen a two-to-one return on its investment.

This program provides Canada with an unprecedented opportunity for long-term and high-quality work in the aerospace and defence sectors. Partner nation acquisitions of the aircraft are expected to exceed 3000 units, and overall production could exceed 5000 aircraft worldwide as other non-partner countries replace their aging fighter fleets. Canadian industrial participation in the JSF program is not limited to the work associated with the 65 Canadian aircraft; Canadian companies will contribute to the manufacture and service of thousands of aircraft.

The work packages available for Canadian companies will include not only the manufacturing and assembly of parts but also servicing, repair, simulation and training, in addition to numerous other sustainment activities over a 40-year period. Early estimates show that the opportunities available to Canada on production could total $12 billion through these industrial participation plans. Further opportunities from training, simulation and maintenance will add to this figure as the industrial benefits from the JSF program continue to flow to Canadian companies throughout the operational lifespan of the worldwide fleet.

For more information on the Next Generation Fighter Capability, please contact the Department of National Defence at: 1-866-377-0811/613-996-2353 or

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