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The federal authorities is now able to actively negotiate the acquisition for a brand new ferry serving the Wooden Islands-Caribou crossing, however the potential price is thus far not being launched to taxpayers.
On the finish of a Liberal cupboard retreat final month, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau introduced the federal authorities supposed to buy the Norwegian vessel and to make sure it was in place between P.E.I. and Nova Scotia by subsequent summer season.
Pablo Rodriguez, minister of transport, stated a 15-day advance contract discover course of was initiated, through which different marine suppliers may sign an curiosity in submitting a competing bid.
That discover expired on Friday, Sept. 8. This implies the federal authorities will now start negotiations with Nye Fanafjord AS, a subsidiary of the Norwegian ferry service firm Fjord1, for the acquisition of the brand new ferry.
“Negotiations are anticipated to be accomplished inside the coming weeks,” Michèle LaRose, a consultant of Public Companies and Procurement Canada, wrote in an electronic mail.
“The overall price will solely be recognized as soon as a contract is awarded. Following contract award, the price of the contract will likely be made accessible publicly.”
The Advance Contract Award Discover to amass an interim substitute for the MV Vacation Island ferry closed on September eighth. The Authorities of Canada will now enter into negotiations with Nye Fanafjord AS for the acquisition of the MV Fanafjord. Extra data to comply with. https://t.co/dclkTVPo1h
— Transport Canada (@Transport_gc) September 11, 2023
Shipbroker J Gran & Co. does list an asking value for the 16-year-old MV Fanafjord at 14 million euros, or $20.4 million Canadian.
By comparability, the federal authorities has thus far dedicated $29.9 million to construct two model new ferries destined for P.E.I. – one for the Wooden Islands-Caribou crossing and one for the Île-de-la-Madeleine-Souris crossing. The development for these new ferries remains to be within the design part.
Federal officers have stated the Fanafjord is the one vessel they’ve discovered that meets the necessities of a ferry on the Wooden Islands-Caribou crossing, comparable to being a double-ended ferry that meets the berth necessities of the terminal docks in each provinces.
The advance contract discover additionally says the brand new vessel should function on diesel gasoline. Presently the Fanafjord at the moment has an LNG engine. It’s unclear if this retrofit will likely be accomplished in Norway or in Canada and whether or not this might improve the acquisition value of the brand new vessel.
The urgency across the buy of the brand new ferry comes after a summer season of breakdowns of the MV Confederation.
A mechanical failure grounded the MV Confederation in June and July for nearly three weeks, cancelling all crossings. One other ferry that had been leased from Quebec, the MV Saaremaa I didn’t arrive till mid-July after it was in drydock for upkeep. This ferry is scheduled to return to Quebec in mid-October, at which level the MV Confederation will the only real ferry serving the Wooden Islands-Caribou crossing till the season closes in December.
The MV Vacation Island, the opposite ferry devoted to the P.E.I.-NS crossing, was scrapped after it caught fireplace throughout a cross in the summertime of 2022.
A substitute ferry for the Vacation Island shouldn’t be anticipated to be accomplished earlier than 2028.