December 3, 2004

Canada seeks applications for maritime security funding

Transport Canada is now accepting applications for the first round of funding under the Marine Security Contribution Program, announced in May 2004. Under the program, Canadian $115 million will be distributed over three years to assist Canada's ports and marine facilities with the cost of modernizing and strengthening their security systems and programs. The deadline for this first round of applications is December 31, 2004.

"This funding will be used to enhance security at our ports and marine facilities, and will help Canada to remain a leading force in marine commerce," said Transport Minister Jean-C Lapierre. "This is the latest in a number of steps taken by the Government of Canada to keep these facilities secure and to facilitate trade."

In compliance with new international security requirements mandated by the International Maritime Organization's International Ship and Port Facility Security Code, the Government of Canada introduced the Marine Transportation Security Regulations which required ports and port facilities to have approved security plans in place and operational by July 1, 2004.

Under the contribution program, which is retroactive to April 1, 2004, ports and marine facilities will be able to apply for funds to assist with new security equipment and programs called for under their security plans. These funds will also help them to extend and build on these security enhancements in the future.

Projects eligible for funding include:

  • surveillance equipment, including cameras and closed-circuit TV systems;
  • improvements to dockside and perimeter security and access control, such as fencing, gates, signage and lighting;
  • command, control and communications equipment, such as portable and vessel-to-shore radios; and,
  • infrastructure security protective measures, such as security guards and arrangements with local police departments.

Application guides are currently being distributed to stakeholders. Information sessions for potential applicants will be held across Canada starting in early December. Further opportunities to apply will be available over the next three years.

The Marine Security Contribution Program forms part of the National Security Policy announced on April 27, 2004, which set out a six-point, Canadian $308 million program to support marine security at ports and marine facilities across Canada.

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