Subsector Highlight:

Naval Defense

As a definitive “port city”, Halifax is a center of industry, finance, defense…and honestly, relaxed and easygoing good times. Warm pubs, diverse dining, and live music often add up to some late nights and lasting memories.

Our strength in defence is, interestingly, rooted in a confident offence.

Given that we’re here on Canada’s (gorgeous) east coast, Halifax is perhaps a geographically obvious location for a national naval base. But geography just scratches the surface of why our defence industry is so strong. Consider our attitude. We are a bold-but-cooperative-get-er-done kind of people. We go for it. Far from resting on our defence laurels, we’re aggressive in the way we both maintain our defence infrastructure and grow the industry.

Canadian Forces Base (CFB) Halifax is home port to the Royal Canadian Navy Atlantic, the largest base in Canada by posted personnel. The city has the highest concentration of Canada's military assets, with two air force bases and the Maritime Warfare Centre. We’re also home to nine of Canadas top ten defence companies, and more than 30% of all of Canadas top defence companies. We’re talking globally recognized companies working in naval defence, torpedo defence, mine hunting, ship hydrodynamics, naval materials research, shipbuilding, sonar and sensing, in-service support, cybersecurity, and training and simulation.

So let’s talk growth. In a contract valued at up to $69 billion over 30 years (the largest single defence procurement in Canadian history), Halifax’s Irving Shipbuilding is working to build Canadas next generation of combat vessels. Given Halifax’s technical expertise, industry strength, and cooperative culture, it’s not terribly surprising that we won this unprecedented project.


DID YOU KNOW:  Nova Scotias defence sector generates $1.5 billion per year in revenue.


Nova Scotia's Defense Clusters:

A large, dynamic, and growing cluster of defence and security companies serve the always-hungry beast that is our country’s east coast defence hub. Our strategic location, competitive talent, and concentration of defence infrastructure attract defence and security companies in:

  • Shipbuilding
  • Sonar & sensing
  • In-service support (ISS)
  • Cybersecurity
  • Training & simulation

The facts of the matter:

  • Nova Scotia has the highest concentration of defence spending in Canada
  • Nine of Canada's top ten defence companies are in Nova Scotia
  • Nova Scotia is home to the East Coast Navy and the largest air force base in eastern Canada
  • Canada's newest combat vessels are being built in Halifax under a $62 billion contract
  • Nova Scotia is home to nine of Canadas top ten defence companies

Halifax is the centre of private defence spending and effort.

Pratt & Whitney
A global leader in aerospace, Canada’s Pratt & Whitney is shaping the future of helicopter and regional aviation with dependable, new generation engines.

Lockheed Martin Canada
The aerospace contractors Halifax branch work includes engineering, software development, integration, and mechanical and hardware design.

General Dynamics
Builder of semi-custom vessels from 6 to 10+ meters, built to serve the needs of the Professional Marine Community in a variety of sectors.

Irving Shipbuilding Inc.
Headquartered in Halifax, a skilled team and impressive facilities provide building, fabrication, conversion, and servicing of vessels and offshore platforms.

In Halifax, we foster defence innovation with investment.

Nova Scotia offers strong defence industry support through the Atlantic Canada Aerospace & Defence Association (ACADA), the Ocean Technology Council (OTCNS) and its Unmanned Systems Committee, bridging the gap between industry, government and academia.

Contact Discover Halifax to learn more!

Ready to learn more, or to start planning your event in Halifax?  Contact our sector expert today.

Paul Bailey (he/him)
Sales & Marketing Director - Group Sales (Aerospace & Defense)
Phone: 1.902.334.1846 (Atlantic Time Zone)
Office/Mail: 1809 Barrington Street, Suite 1004, Halifax, Nova Scotia, B3J 3K8