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On Watch March 24, 2021

On Watch March 24, 2021

  March 24, 2021


Words from the CEO

cmisapresidentimg-jan272021.jpgWelcome to another edition of On Watch, and an especial welcome to our new readers! We are beginning a new series of Member Spotlights, starting with Aquila PQMS, a specialized Canadian company that provides cloud-based communication and document management applications for shipbuilding.

Shipbuilding in Canada is busy and I would like to highlight the many Government of Canada opportunities listed in the Resources section of this newsletter. We have had much positive feedback on the inclusion of this section, as our readers have found valuable information on opportunities. One opportunity to note is the Call for Proposals by Defence Research and Development Canada looking to fund companies that can provide innovative solutions to mitigate the effects of future, high impact, low frequency events such as pandemics, natural disasters, or other man made or natural disruptive forces in order to enhance our resilience in a post-pandemic world.

Happy reading, and please feel free to pass this newsletter on to your colleagues and contacts.

Colin Cooke


Member Spotlight: Aquila PQMS
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    Niki Walton, courtesy of Aquila PQMS

CMISA is pleased to welcome Aquila PQMS to the fold as a member. Aquila is a new Canadian company that provides cloud-based communication and document management applications for shipbuilding. Building ships is a very complex endeavour and requires a great deal of collaboration between shipowner and shipyard, particularly in the areas of communication around drawings. This is where Aquila comes in: the software is designed to collaborate in a formalized way and enhance existing workflows. Aquila’s functionality can track progress and comments, allowing teams to review disparate drawings collaboratively and openly, thereby reducing strain on the shipbuilding process.

A small company, Aquila is experiencing rapid growth due to the ability of their software to solve a fundamental communication challenge for shipping companies, yards and even class societies. Serving clients on the commercial as well as military side, Aquila is looking to make inroads by integrating into the architecture of more shipyards and can offer a great deal of customization to help automate more of the work.

Aquila is proud of being a Canadian company that is committed to fostering diversity in the tech industry, particularly at the leadership level. This commitment is exemplified by Managing Director Niki Walton, a woman with over 20 years of experience in the shipping and software industries, areas where women have traditionally been under-represented. According to Niki, a company that sees value in diversity is a much richer environment for change, strategy and innovation. Building ships is an extremely complex undertaking, and the operating environment of sending what amounts to floating cities across high seas is risky and awe-inspiring. Niki believes that Aquila can play a strong role in supporting shipowners and yards in dealing with complexity in a simple, organized, formalized and open manner, now and in the future. She is very excited to be a part of CMISA in order to make connections in a very targeted, sector-specific way, and to gain further insights into the entire Canadian marine sector through the events, seminars and conferences organized by CMISA. Niki considers CMISA an invaluable partner in supporting Aquila’s growth, and sees the value in becoming and remaining a member as Aquila helps shipbuilders focus and collaborate on complicated shipbuilding projects in a thriving Canadian industry.


Public Consultation on Future Trade Negotiations with the U.K. 

The Government of Canada is launching a public consultation on March 12, 2021 on an anticipated bilateral Canada-U.K. free trade agreement and a possible U.K. accession to the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP). The objective of the consultation is to hear from a broad range of partners, stakeholders and individual Canadians to help define Canada’s interests in future bilateral FTA negotiations and the possible accession of the U.K. to the CPTPP. The results of the consultation will inform future decision making on both of these endeavours. Written responses on this issue are welcomed, either by email to or by post:

Canada-U.K. Trade Consultations
Global Affairs Canada
Trade Negotiations Division (TCA)
Lester B. Pearson Building
125 Sussex Drive
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0G2

The consultation will remain open until April 27, 2021.

Exploring the Potential for Scrubbers to Capture Maritime CO2 Emissions

Finnish maritime technology firm Wärtsilä has just highlighted the potential for exhaust gas abatement systems to directly tackle maritime carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in the near future, as technology advances and enables manufacturers to design and upgrade scrubbers to capture carbon at the point of exhaust.

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NewDock wins two ship Canadian Coast Guard VLE contract

Canadian ship repairer NewDock (St. John’s Dockyard Limited), St. John’s, Newfoundland, has been awarded a CAD 20,7 million (about US$ 16.6 million) contract to complete Vessel Life Extension (VLE) work on the Canadian Coast Guard Ships (CCGS) Cape Roger and Cygnus.

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U.S. Coast Guard to send icebreaker through Northwest Passage with Canada’s consent

The U.S. Coast Guard is working with the Canadian government to send its medium icebreaker Healy through the Northwest Passage in late summer as part of Washington’s strategy to expand American presence on the world’s oceans, Canadian officials confirmed late Friday.

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Atlantic Towing and Irving Shipbuilding Commit to Camosun College and BC Coastal Communities; New Technology, Scholarships, and Placements for Students in Marine Studies

VICTORIA, British Columbia, March 18, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Atlantic Towing Limited (ATL) is pleased to announce two recurring financial awards for Indigenous students enrolled in Camosun College’s Bridge Watch Rating and Culinary programs. Camosun College is a community college located in Greater Victoria, serving approximately 19,000 students.

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Government of Canada awards contract for the Vessel Life Extension of Canadian Coast Guard Ships Cape Roger and Cygnus

GATINEAU, QC, March 18, 2021 /CNW/ - Through the National Shipbuilding Strategy, the Government of Canada is ensuring the Canadian Coast Guard has the vessels it needs to keep Canadian waterways safe and accessible, while creating jobs and generating economic benefits for communities across Canada.

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Government of Canada and Heiltsuk Nation collaborate to develop a local Marine Emergency Response Team

BELLA BELLA, BC, March 16, 2021 /CNW/ - Coastal First Nations have an intimate knowledge of lands and waters in their territory, and are often the first on the scene when there's an emergency on the water. When they are empowered to manage these environments, everyone benefits. 

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Western Canada Marine Response Corporation responds to fuel spill on Tsleil-Waututh territory

On February 22, the Western Canada Marine Response Corporation (WCMRC), who work to clean marine spills, responded to a fuel spill on the Burrard Inlet caused by an oil tanker. The spill took place on the Tsleil-Waututh Nation’s territory and resulted in a litre of fuel spilling into the water. 

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Seaspan Shipyards invests $1M in new faculty chair position at UBC

North Vancouver, BC – Today, Seaspan Shipyards and the University of British Columbia (UBC) announced the establishment of a new faculty chair position at UBC. 

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Canada extends Babcock's Victoria class in-service support contract

The Canadian Government has decided to extend the existing Victoria in-service support contract (VISSC) with Babcock Canada.

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New Government Procurement CandaBuys

Public Services and Procurement Canada (PSPC) is using SAP Ariba, a web-based tool that allows businesses to view and bid on opportunities with the Government of Canada. 

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Why Canada needs 15 state-of-the-art frigates

As the newly released PBO reports takes a shot at comparing other ships program to the actual one being pursued, I would like first to take a look at what are we meant to do with our next generation combat ship. 

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Shipbuilding is in BC's DNA. Let's keep it that way.

Shipbuilding, renovation, and repair have long been strengths in BC's economic success, and we've been there all along. 

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Perks for Members

CMISA promotes and supports our industry with activities to:

  • Build and maintain ships for Canada and for the private sector (Build & Maintain)
  • Support business opportunities for our marine industry members (Support)
  • Sustain a network to voice our concerns and promote our solutions (Sustain)


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