CSC lifecycle cost

CSC Life-Cycle Costs Under Scrutiny

Dan Middlemiss, 25 December 2020.

Murray Brewster reported on 23 December that an independent analysis reveals that the total life-cycle costs of the Canadian Surface Combatant (CSC) have risen to between $213 billion and over $219 billion [1]. The staggering sum reported by Alan Williams, a former senior defence official, has caught the attention of many in the defence community, and has apparently led the House of Commons government operations and estimates committee to seek a copy of the report.

Williams’ argument focuses on the issue of value for money, and suggests that the public has a right to know the long-term implications of any decision by Ottawa to proceed with the CSC project as it is currently structured [2].

This report, and the additional controversy it is certain to engender, evokes memories of the harsh debate over the full life-cycle costs of the F-35 fighter project some years ago.

This scrutiny of the true costs of the CSC is likely to trigger a fierce political debate on the CSC project just when Ottawa is trying to finalize a contract with Lockheed Martin Canada and Irving Shipbuilding.


  1. Murray Brewster, “Battle of the budget: DND gears up to defend lifetime cost of new warships in the New Year”, CBC News, (23 December 2020). [Accessed at:]
  2. For the full report, see Alan Williams, “Estimated Costs for the Canadian Surface Combatants (CSC)”, Esprit de Corps, (20 October 2020). [Accessed at:]

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