Provincial officials, looking back at an almost $9-million investment in Shelburne Ship Repair, are liking what they see.
The facility in Shelburne, N.S. remains busy repairing ships and employs around 75 people, 35 more than before the work started.
The shipyard's latest contract is to repair HMCS Shawinigan, which will keep workers busy into November.
In January 2010, the province invested $8.8 million in Irving Shipbuilding's $16.6-million project to upgrade the marine railway and wharf, and build a new cradle.
"Investments by the province and Irving Shipbuilding enabled this facility to attract new opportunities at a very exciting time for the industry," said Irving Shipbuilding president Steve Durrell. "Shelburne Ship Repair is now seeing more repeat business from satisfied customers, and that speaks volumes about the quality of work by the skilled men and women at the yard."
Since August 2011, Shelburne Ship Repair has won 16 contracts from 10 different customers. Two of those contracts this spring were to complete repairs on cargo vessels MV Umiavut and MV Avataq, owned by Nunavut Eastern Arctic Shipping.
"Our ships resupply cargo to communities and mines up in the Canadian Arctic," said Georges Tousignant, vice-president operations, Nunavut Eastern Arctic Shipping Inc. "We have to have absolute faith in our ships as there isn't any support available where we go. The Shelburne Ship Repair team provided excellent service for the vessels, and were able to support all the additional metal and mechanical tasks that came up as part of our five-year special survey."
Shelburne Ship Repair can work on vessels up to 229 metres long, and the new marine railway is capable of lifting two vessels weighing up to 4,200 tonnes each.
"Having an active and successful marine sector in Shelburne is very important for the stability of our economy," said Municipality of Shelburne Warden Sherman Embree. "These long-term jobs have made a difference for families here, and I know many people are excited about the prosperity this is bringing to our community."