Liberal government to hire shipbuilding expert after costs soar

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JK
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Liberal government to hire shipbuilding expert after costs soar

Postby JK » Sat Dec 05, 2015 4:06 am

What is really interesting about this article is the fact that PWGSC, the contracting arm of the government, had an entire technical section dedicated to being the experts on shipbuilding. The section inspected to ensure delivery met the contract and managed ship repair and new build contractual issues. (After all ships aren't like buying paper.) . This inspection arm was full of very experienced individuals. I expect that persons who have only bought pen and paper are having huge learning curves on dealing with the various yards and their "peccadilloes " LOL
The whole section was wiped out nationwide around 2009-2010 as a cost saving measure just as GOC was entering into the multi billion dollar NSPS:

The new Liberal government has movedy to reform Canada's costly National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy, promising a new system to evaluate costs, launch quarterly public updates and provide annual reports to Parliament.

Public Services Minister Judy Foote is also hiring a shipbuilding expert to advise the government, filling a gap in expertise in her department, tasked with managing the massive multibillion-dollar ship program, CBC News has learned.

In an indication of how swiftly the government intends to move to repair the shipbuilding program, the government is expecting to begin its interviews of experts as soon as Friday.

The National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy was developed by the government to assist in rebuilding the Canadian industry and providing domestic capacity to rebuild the fleets of both the navy and the Coast Guard.

The program had an initial budget of some $39 billion to build as many as 30 large ships for the two capital fleets.

But the program has moved slowly and build contracts have only been let for two of six classes of ships. The NSPS is also now beset by budgetary problems.

CBC News on Tuesday reported massive cost increases in one of those projects to build new warships for the navy to replace its aging frigates and destroyers.

The budget for the Canadian Surface Combatant program had been set years ago at $26.2 billion. But CBC News learned that's nowhere near enough cash for 15 modern warships as planned.

The build portion of that budget was set at $14 billion, but it's now estimated to cost $30 billion, bringing the roughly estimated cost for the whole program to more than $42 billion. Those costs were confirmed Wednesday by navy commander Vice-Admiral Mark Norman in an exclusive interview with CBC News.

Norman admitted Canadians had not been given accurate information about the growing price of new warships. He said it flowed from a lack of professional capacity and maturity across the shipbuilding sector in Canada, from navy officials, to procurement bureaucrats right on down to shipbuilders.

"We didn't have that mature relationship," Norman said. "We didn't have the mature industry, and so there was a lot of guessing and speculation going on. And to be quite blunt, we got a lot of it wrong."

The navy commander said it was time to start having a more transparent public conversation about how many ships the navy needs, what it needs them to do and what the government should be prepared to pay for it.
New direction

That view seems to align with the government's new direction on shipbuilding.

Last week, CBC News revealed the ministers of defence and public services had been warned the government needed to institute a four-point "Action Plan" to get the program back on track.

Foote and Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan were warned the government needed to hire new staff to increase its capacity to manage the massive shipbuilding program and to "hire a senior shipbuilding expert to advise the government of Canada."

Government will be asked to make some significant decisions soon.'

- Briefing to ministers
They were told costs were rising for the navy and for the coast guard where the budget for three fisheries science vessels had ballooned 181.6% from an estimated $244 million in 2009 to $687-million in 2015.

There was also a warning that another planned coast guard ship, the Offshore Oceanographic Science Vessel, would need to have its funding envelope increased, as would the warship program.

"Government will be asked to make some significant decisions soon, including one on whether to approve the funding of OOSV and additional funding for [the frigate replacement]," Foote and Sajjan were told.

It appears the government is acting on those warnings and recommendations now.

The Liberal party campaigned on a promise to meet the commitments that were made as part of the National Shipbuilding and Procurement Strategy.

"Unlike Stephen Harper, we will have the funds that we need to build promised icebreakers, supply ships, arctic and offshore patrol ships, surface combatants, and other resources required by the navy," the platform said.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/liberal ... -1.3347779
Last edited by JK on Sun Dec 06, 2015 4:42 am, edited 2 times in total.
Reason: Added punctuation and edited for readiibility

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D Winsor
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Re: Liberal government to hire shipbuilding expert after costs soar

Postby D Winsor » Sat Dec 05, 2015 11:08 am

I wonder who they will find with the necessary experience or have to res-erect or entice out of retirement to take that position?
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JK
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Re: Liberal government to hire shipbuilding expert after costs soar

Postby JK » Sat Dec 05, 2015 2:20 pm

They interviewed yesterday. I wonder who knew enough to judge the answers. Lol.

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Re: Liberal government to hire shipbuilding expert after costs soar

Postby JollyJack » Sun Dec 06, 2015 8:51 pm

I think you'll find that the cost increases are all in gizmos and gadgets the Navy chair polishers in Ottawa have added on. At least, that's what we found in St John shipbuilding in the late '80s/early 90s. The "add ons" to the Halifax frigates were mostly quashed by Irving, they had a fixed price contract for 12 ships and had no intention of going over that budget. It came to a head when the Halifax, first ship of the class, was ready for delivery, the navy crew arrived in St John, then the brass wanted more toys added. The yard refused, so the navy put their crew on buses to return to Halifax.

The story goes that KC got on the phone to Ottawa and said "Brian, if you don't take delivery of this ship right now, it goes up for sale to the highest bidder tomorrow"

The buses got as far as the NB/NS border at Amherst before they were turned around.
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Re: Liberal government to hire shipbuilding expert after costs soar

Postby JK » Mon Dec 07, 2015 4:58 am

Stuff like that happens because Captains do not understand contracts. I was told a story about the project manager in Halifax, at about the same time, refusing to sign the progress payment for the Louis S St Laurent modernization, because the yard hadn't met the contractual requirements. He got the same call from Brian and company. LOL

Government ships cost a lot of money because they are designed to do so many things.
On the civilian side they do SAR, ice breaking, fisheries patrol, RCMP interdiction duties, science programs, trap hauling, coring, soundings, shark counts and on and on. It gets pretty crowded on a 120 m hull. Add the accommodations for the supernumeraries, the electrical load, the hydraulic load, the security requirements, a platform stable enough to do the work, all on a platform that will give up to 40-50 years service.

Like Mr Winsor said, who are they going to pull out of mothballs, because it has to be someone who knows Canadian shipbuilding and what it takes to build a government ship.

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Re: Liberal government to hire shipbuilding expert after costs soar

Postby JK » Wed Feb 24, 2016 7:09 am

Back the UK for an expert!

The federal government has chosen a retired British Royal Navy admiral to be Canada's expert advisor on the National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy developed to rebuild both the navy and Coast Guard.
Steve Brunton served in the Royal Navy for 36 years, most of which was spent in acquisitions. He will provide ministers and senior government officials with advice on different areas of the strategy including risk, program management, construction, competitiveness and performance.


http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/royal-navy-admiral-shipbuilding-1.3459033

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Davie shipyard boss calls Canada's national shipbuilding strategy 'bizarre'

Postby JK » Mon Mar 21, 2016 6:29 am

The boss of Canada's largest shipyard says a $36-billion national shipbuilding plan is becoming an "international embarrassment" with a "bizarre" costing regime and "exorbitant" prices, despite producing no ships to date.

"It's been five years and the two shipyards haven't built a single ship," said Alex Vicefield, CEO of Inocea, a global shipping conglomerate that owns Quebec's Davie shipyard.

"All we hear are delays and cost overruns which are so high, they are turning the Canadian shipbuilding industry into an international embarrassment."

http://www.cbc.ca/beta/news/politics/da ... -1.3494460


Given Davies past history, I wonder how things are going there.


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