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Government of Canada and Marine Atlantic Inc. dedicate second of two new ferries

November 24, 2011

The Honourable Steven Fletcher, Minister of State (Transport), Wayne Follett, President and Chief Executive Officer of Marine Atlantic (MAI), and Colonel (Retired) Ian Macintyre, Honorary Colonel of the Nova Scotia Highlanders and the Cape Breton Highlanders, today officially welcomed and dedicated the MV Highlanders , the namesake vessel honouring the Nova Scotia and Cape Breton Highland Regiments. The vessel, in tandem with her sister ship the MV Blue Puttees , has significantly improved Marine Atlantic's ability to provide on-time, reliable service and meet increasing traffic demand between North Sydney, Nova Scotia and Port aux Basques, Newfoundland and Labrador. 

"Our government recognizes the importance of the ferry connection between Newfoundland and Labrador and the mainland as a transportation link for goods and travellers which is why we have invested significantly in the revitalization of Marine Atlantic," said Minister Fletcher. "These new vessels have substantially improved Marine Atlantic's ability to provide on-time, reliable service to meet the needs of the people and businesses of Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and Labrador."

"The addition of the MV Highlanders and MV Blue Puttees to our fleet has helped to significantly improve Marine Atlantic's service," said Mr. Follett. "We just completed one of the most successful summer seasons in recent history and our customers have told us that they are pleased with the improvements that have taken place to all aspects of our service. Through the Government of Canada's continued co-operation and support, our Corporation will make additional improvements to our infrastructure and business processes. Our employees and customers are embracing this positive change and we look forward to the many opportunities that will be presented in the months ahead."

"It is with great pride that we are here today to participate in the dedication of the MV Highlanders and to thank Marine Atlantic, on behalf of this province's two Highland Regiments, for such a noble gesture, particularly as we are celebrating our 140th year of service to Canada. Tapah leibh/Thank you," said Colonel (Retired) Ian Macintyre, Honourary Colonel of the the Nova Scotia and Cape Breton Highlanders.

Acquiring these new vessels was made possible by the Government of Canada's recent five-year, $521 million investment to revitalize Marine Atlantic and renew its fleet and shore facilities at North Sydney, Nova Scotia, and Port aux Basques and Argentia, Newfoundland and Labrador. This initiative builds on the Government of Canada's strategy, announced in February 2007, to revitalize Marine Atlantic's ferry services.

Marine Atlantic Inc., is a federal Crown corporation that provides a vital ferry link between Newfoundland and Labrador and Nova Scotia supporting the economies of the Atlantic Provinces, facilitating the import and export of goods, and helping grow the region's tourism sector.

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Media Contact:

Tara Laing, Communications Manager

Tel: 709-772-8974

Email: tlaing@marine-atlantic.ca

Brayden Akers, Press Secretary

Office of the Minister of State (Transport)

(613) 991-0700