On behalf of the more than 330 member companies of the Aerospace Industries Association and the 1.7 million people our industry employs, we welcome the renewed emphasis on increased defense spending, job creation and tax reform that President Trump outlined in his speech this evening.
To reach our full potential, we need strong leadership from President Trump and Congress in five areas.
We urge government leaders to address the adverse impact of sequestration by revising the BCA caps
to end regulatory overreach
to renew American leadership in global trade
to promote comprehensive tax reform that stimulates job creation, and
to invest in infrastructure for a stronger America
Revising the BCA caps will allow our industry to provide our warfighters with modern, effective equipment, foster innovation, and create jobs in America’s strongest manufacturing sector.
We also must invest in science, technology, engineering and math education and civilian research and development programs.
On regulation, we advocate for a collaborative approach between government and industry that will eliminate burdensome regulations and accommodate emerging technologies, such as unmanned aircraft systems and commercial space capabilities.
Even in an increasingly competitive global marketplace, the aerospace and defense industry provides 10% of all U.S. exports – $146 billion in 2016 and generating a $90 billion trade surplus.
(These are the small business owners of the aerospace an defense industry. They supply our manufacturing base and have developed the specialties to maintain our competitive edge. These are American business owners, and threatened by the mindless cuts which are soon to be imposed by sequestration. Courtesy of AIA and YouTube)
But there is still room for improvement – we must restore the Export-Import Bank’s ability to level the playing field for American exporters and companies of all sizes while producing a positive revenue stream to the Treasury, and we must formulate a National Security Cooperation Strategy that maximizes benefits for the United States and our allies.
Comprehensive tax reform, including setting a globally competitive corporate tax rate, leveling the international playing field for America-made exports and creating a territorial tax system that encourages repatriation of overseas income, will stimulate business investment and American job creation.
Finally, investment in infrastructure for a stronger America must include modernization of our air traffic control system to enhance safety and efficiency in our national airspace and investments in space systems including civil, commercial and national security applications.
Our industry has great potential to create high-quality jobs that boost the U.S. economy. We stand ready to work collaboratively with President Trump, his administration and Congress on specific policies that will strengthen America’s armed forces and promote our nation’s economic growth.
Founded in 1919, the Aerospace Industries Association is the most authoritative and influential trade association representing the U.S. aerospace and defense industry on Capitol Hill, within the administration and internationally.
As the voice of American aerospace and defense, representing manufacturers and suppliers across every high-technology manufacturing sector, AIA’s strong advocacy is essential to protecting the interests of our nation and our industry.