News / Halifax

Irving to fill 150 new jobs at Halifax Shipyard in 2016

The Atlantic Canadian company is forecasting 1,393 new jobs in Nova Scotia over the next three years.

The Halifax Shipyard.

Metro file

The Halifax Shipyard.

The Halifax Shipyard will welcome 150 new workers this year, J.D. Irving announced Wednesday.

The Atlantic Canadian company is forecasting 7,900 new hires in total from coast to coast and south of the border, including 1,393 in Nova Scotia, across all of its operations over the next three years.

Upwards of 90 per cent of those positions will be in the Atlantic provinces, according to an Irving news release.

"There would be a number of them that would be here at the shipyard, and of course we have retail operations in Nova Scotia, as well as construction and equpiment," Irving spokeswoman Mary Keith added Wednesday.

"And of course, Atlantic Towing operates from here, so it would be a combination of all of our operations in the province," she said by phone from the Halifax Shipyard, which she's visiting this week.

"But the bulk of the jobs, without question, would be here at the shipyard," Keith said.

The total workforce currently at the Halifax Shipyard is "roughly" 1,000, she said, which includes 250 new hires and 325 recalled employees last year.

The new hires will happen as Irving ramps up building its first ship on site, "and moves into cutting steel for the second ship," Keith said.

Steel cutting for that second ship is expected to start around summer 2017, she said.

"At peak, we're forcasting 2,400 ... direct employees," Keith said. "But that's with the construction of the second set of larger warships."

Positions will open up for workers in skilled trades, as well as for professionals in areas ranging from accounting to information technology to engineering, Keith explained.

Irving is also planning on filling 2,000 paid internships and co-op work terms over the next three years, including 650 students, the news release said.

"The addition of good-paying jobs and meaningful careers is a good thing," she said. "We're certainly committed to growing opportunity in Nova Scotia."

Many workers are starting to move back from the west coast to work in the Halifax Shipyard, she pointed out. "We're bringing them home."