Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Fisheries and Oceans Canada

April 12, 2007 09:30 ET

Minister Hearn Releases Details of Canada's New Government Investment in Coast Guard Fleet

ST. JOHN'S, NEWFOUNDLAND AND LABRADOR--(CCNMatthews - April 12, 2007) - The Honourable Loyola Hearn, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans today announced details of investments by Canada's New Government in the renewal of the Canadian Coast Guard fleet.

The March 2007 federal budget identified $324 million for the purchase and maintenance of six new vessels for the fleet. This brings the government's total investments in Coast Guard to more than $750 million since February 2006, for a total of four new offshore vessels and 12 new mid shore patrol vessels. Coast Guard also has plans under way to acquire an air cushion vehicle for its fleet.

"This substantial investment is an indication of the government's confidence in Coast Guard and its long record of providing quality service to Canadians," said Minister Hearn. "With these positive changes, the Coast Guard can continue to focus on what it does best: providing valuable services to mariners in Canadian waters."

Eight of the new mid-shore patrol vessels will be multi-tasked, and used primarily for fisheries conservation and protection duties in the Maritimes, Quebec and Pacific regions. The remaining four mid-shore patrol vessels are new additions to the fleet and will be used for maritime security duties on the St. Lawrence Seaway-Great Lakes system. These vessels will take part in a joint program with the RCMP, responding to the Government's commitment to enhance the security of the nation's coasts and waterways.

Three state-of-the-art offshore fishery science vessels will be based in the Pacific, Maritimes and Newfoundland regions, and a fourth offshore oceanographic science vessel will be based in the Maritimes.

Overall, five of the new vessels are additions to the Coast Guard fleet and 11 will replace existing vessels nearing the end of their life expectancies. Fleet renewal is a multi-year undertaking, with the first vessel scheduled to be delivered in August of 2009 and the last of these vessels targeted for some time in 2014. The new vessels will be deployed to their appropriate Coast Guard regions as they become available.

The high-speed air cushion vehicle is a replacement vessel and will be based in Quebec region and used primarily for search and rescue, maintenance to navigational aids and icebreaking for flood control and seaway operation.

"Renewing the country's marine civilian fleet will also contribute to a revitalized Canadian shipbuilding industry," noted Minister Hearn, "and provide additional, reliable support for increasingly important marine scientific research and maintain Canada's maritime presence."

Coast Guard provides marine services on behalf of the federal government, including search and rescue operations, maintaining aids to navigation, icebreaking, facilitating maritime commerce, and effective marine environmental response. The Coast Guard also supports its federal partners' efforts to provide security along Canada's maritime borders.

Minister Hearn also announced the redeployment of two Coast Guard heavy icebreakers. The CCGS Terry Fox will be deployed from Maritimes Region to Newfoundland and Labrador Region in April 2008, and the CCGS Louis S. St-Laurent will follow in April 2009. These transfers are being made to avoid significant additional infrastructure costs which would be required if they stayed in the Maritimes Region. The infrastructure is already in place in Newfoundland to accommodate the vessels.

To access the following fact sheets, go to our web site at the address below.

Fact Sheets:

- Offshore Oceanographic Science Vessel

- Offshore Fishery Science Vessel

- Mid-shore Patrol Vessel

- Air Cushion Vehicle

Contact Information

  • Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Ottawa
    Sophie Galarneau
    Manager, Media Relations
    Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Ottawa
    Office of the Minister
    Steve Outhouse
    Director of Communications