The Canadian Government has unveiled the preferred design and bidder to build fifteen new surface combatants.
Lockheed Martin Canada and partner BAE Systems have been selected to provide the design and design team for the Royal Canadian Navy’s future Canadian Surface Combatants.
Canada’s new generation of surface combatants will be based on the BAE Systems’ Type 26 Global Combat Ship design.
Irving Shipbuilding has been mandated by the Canadian Government to supply the shipbuilding services.
The announcement follows the decision made by the Australian Government in June 2018 to select BAE Systems and the Type 26, to be known as the Hunter class in Australian service, as the successful bidder for the $35 billion SEA 5000 Future Frigate program.
The new Canadian Surface Combatant fleet will replace the Iroquois and Halifax-class warships and provide wide-area air defence, anti-submarine warfare and anti-shipping capability.
While the announcement of the preferred Canadian bidder represents a significant milestone in the competitive process, more work is required before a contract is awarded.
Lockheed Martin Canada Inc., the lead contractor on the Canadian shipbuilding program, must now go through a significant 'due diligence process' along with partner BAE Systems, which includes:
• Negotiations with the government on intellectual property rights;
• An assessment of combat systems performance; and
• An assessment of the companies' financial capability to deliver the project, together with the verification of various other administrative matters.
Should the preferred bidder Lockheed Martin and BAE Systems not successfully demonstrate to Canada and Irving Shipbuilding Inc. that it meets all of the due diligence requirements, then the next highest ranked compliant bidder will become the preferred bidder.
That business will then have to successfully demonstrate that it meets all of the due diligence requirements.
Gary Fudge, Vice President and General Manager of Lockheed Marin Canada Rotary and Mission Systems and Executive Lead for Canada’s Combat Ship Team said, "We are thrilled that Canada’s Combat Ship Team has been selected as the preferred bidder for the Canadian Surface Combatant design – today is a great day for the shipbuilding industry in Canada and a significant milestone for the National Shipbuilding Strategy.
"We’re confident that our proposed solution meets the requirements established offering the best ship for Canada with the world’s most advanced warship design and bringing together a pan-Canadian team employing thousands of highly skilled employees across a diverse spectrum of engineering to high tech trades careers," he said.
The two other organisations that provided proposals for the Canadian Surface Combatant included Alion Canada and Damen Group with a bid based on the Dutch De Zeven Provincien-class frigate as well as Navantia, who offered a solution based on the Spanish F-105 frigate.
A contract award is expected within the first quarter of 2019, with construction beginning in the early 2020s.
The Canadian Surface Combatant project is the largest, most complex procurement ever undertaken by the Government of Canada.
These ships will form the backbone of the Royal Canadian Navy and will be Canada’s major surface component of maritime combat power for decades to come.
More to come.