Nunatsiaq Online
NEWS: Nunavut September 08, 2017 - 7:00 am

German firm to develop new Nunavut airline procurement strategy

Lufthansa Consulting wins $698,000 GN contact

Aircraft from Nunavut's two biggest airlines, First Air and Canadian North, parked on the tarmac in Rankin Inlet. The GN has just awarded a new contract to a German consulting firm to re-evaluate its medical travel and duty travel contracts. (FILE PHOTO)
Aircraft from Nunavut's two biggest airlines, First Air and Canadian North, parked on the tarmac in Rankin Inlet. The GN has just awarded a new contract to a German consulting firm to re-evaluate its medical travel and duty travel contracts. (FILE PHOTO)

The Government of Nunavut has issued a contract to a German consulting firm to help develop a new procurement policy ahead of the territory’s next medical and duty travel contracts.

The GN put out the request for proposals earlier this summer, looking for an aviation specialist to analyse its options ahead of its next contract deadline in September 2019.

The $698,000 contract was awarded Sept. 1 to Lufthansa Consulting, a German firm affiliated with a group of companies that include the well-known airline of the same name.

The pricey contract award indicates the GN is looking to save money down the road; the territory estimates the value of its combined medical and duty travel at between $60 million and $65 million a year.

A 2010 study found that medical travel—broadly defined as when Nunavummiut are required to travel outside their home communities for health-related appointments—and duty travel represent about 36 per cent of the territory’s airline market, although it’s higher in some regions.

As per the terms of reference included in Nunavut Airline Procurement Strategy RFP, the territorial government wants to weigh the pros and cons of combining both medical and duty travel within a single contract, as separate contracts or with no contracts at all.

“What would be the impact if there were no formal contracts for medical travel or duty travel, and the GN were entirely reliant on the free market,” the RFP’s terms of reference posed.

Regardless, the end goal, the RFP notes, is to provide “the best value government operations and to all Nunavummiut.”

The GN also wants to explore the potential advantages of issuing contracts by region versus a territory-wide approach.

The content of the contract itself is confidential, a GN spokesperson said; while proposals submitted to the government in public tenders are not typically disclosed.

But the report and strategy to emerge from the process is widely expected to inform the next territorial government’s approach to commercial, scheduled service across the territory. Nunavummiut go to the polls to elect new MLAs on Oct. 30.

Following research and rounds of consultations with communities and stakeholders, Lufthansa Consulting is expected to issue a final report to the GN by July 2, 2018.

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(11) Comments:

#1. Posted by on September 08, 2017

Its about time the GN finally recognized that Germans can solve any/all problems. After all they the pulled off the Wirtschaftswunder.

Its too bad the scope of work does not include assessment of how to deliver a bilingual education system, and, an sensible economic development strategy.

I look forward to the possibility of leaving my GN job to work on this project with the Germans.

#2. Posted by Ignored on September 08, 2017

What happen to the NNI Policy? It wasn’t applied? What happening with Canadian North and FIrst Air?

#3. Posted by sled dog on September 08, 2017

this is a step in the right direction for the GN to bring in Subject Matter Experts to assist in developing policy that affect everyone in the territory.

The practice of hiring SME’s is not uncommon but I am sure there will be one particular commenter who will be “concerned”

#4. Posted by Screw'em on September 08, 2017

Screw First air and Canadian North, two biggest crooks in the north.

#5. Posted by Cuzzin on September 08, 2017

Poor Nunavummiut Can not get satisfied with realisation of aviation in the North and wants to feed German people. Everybody is going crazy especially Nunavut Leaders. hah !

#6. Posted by Colin on September 08, 2017

Saudi Arabia brought on nomadic Bedouin—the desert equivalent of people in the arctic-for 100 percent Saudi employment in the international airline they started in 1960. That includes pilots, engineers, accountants—everyone. And First Air? Owned by Inuit in Nunavik since 1989.

#7. Posted by Arnold McGillicuddy on September 08, 2017

Many of you need to read the article because your comments show how little effort you made to understand the topic.  It’s not a contract for air travel, it’s a contract to help the GN (and YOU: Nunavummiut) get a better contract with First Air/Canadian North/Calm Air the next time they enter into those negotiations.

Lufthansa is a huge operation with many small regional airlines and they exist in all continental airline markets.  They will not be able to bid on GN airline contracts because they have agreed to this advisory and planning role. 

I applaud the GN for turning to a knowledgeable ‘Subject Matter Expert’ to help them plan for the next rounds of contracts with our airlines.

#8. Posted by Colin Gunn on September 08, 2017

If nothing else, at least an outside advisor will not favour the usual company with the most decision makers in its pockets…I think it is a positive step.

#9. Posted by You know who on September 11, 2017

Typical solution of health. Let’s hire an outside consultant to do our work for us. In the meantime Health’s deficits are mushrooming like a North Korean nuclear cloud.

#10. Posted by Voter on September 12, 2017

Remember the whining by some about Inuit orgs going south too much, not even close when the GN spends 60-65 million per year to go south,

36% of 65 million, that’s pretty high for one year. Every other week travel south? Spikes around holidays.

But again people are too disconnected with the GN to notice this and look at the smaller players.

Anyway I think this is also in the right direction hiring a company outside of First Air and Canadian, let’s hope we get a better deal and some changes out of this.

#11. Posted by happy on September 12, 2017

Wow this possibly will be our tickets to cheaper flights in the north!

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