Hon. Dennis Dawson: My question is for the Leader of the Government in the Senate. The mayor of Quebec City, Régis Labeaume, has added his voice to the coalition that is emerging in Quebec in support of the Davie shipyard — or the new Davie, as Quebecers now call it, not the Davie of old that delivered late and over budget. No, the new Davie has proven that it is possible to deliver on time and on budget. In fact, the Asterix supply ship that was just delivered will be the Canadian navy’s largest vessel. Can the leader tell this chamber whether these efforts will be compensated and whether the government will go ahead with the construction of a second supply ship?
Last night, I was at the Navy and Coast Guard event, and people were asking me what my government is doing. I had to explain that even though I am obviously still a Liberal, I am not part of the government. They want to know what they are waiting for. Jobs are at stake, security is at stake and the economy is at stake. What are we waiting for to give Quebec its fair share of the ship-building industry?
Hon. Peter Harder (Government Representative in the Senate): I thank the honourable senator for his question and his representation. The question is entirely appropriate for the workers of Quebec City and the Davie shipyard. The Government of Canada is committed to the National Shipbuilding Strategy that it is putting in place. It is a long-term commitment that the government seeks to re-energize and rejuvenate the marine industry. The National Ship Building Strategy sets aside $2 billion of resources to support opportunities for the smaller shipyards like Davie and other Canadian shipyards for small shipping construction.
The government is committed to consulting with the marine industry on their requirements and how these funds can best be deployed.