In the last year, the UK’s aerospace, defence, security and space industries have continued to make an ever-growing contribution to our national prosperity.
This summer we hosted the 2018 Farnborough International Airshow, the most international edition in our history, putting a global spotlight on our world-leading aerospace, defence and space sectors. In July, more than 1,400 commercial aircraft were ordered, with the potential value to UK industry reaching $28 billion.
The continued high demand for new aircraft that we have seen at Farnborough and throughout the year helps to demonstrate the scale of the opportunity in the global aerospace industry. Last year was a record year for aircraft deliveries and we are confident a new record will be set in 2018 as production in the UK and around the world continues to rise.
There is an opportunity to benefit further from the production of the more than 14,000 aircraft now on global order books, and of future models not yet developed. To do so we must maximise our competitiveness, continue to invest in productivity improvements and enjoy the benefits of smooth access to our most important overseas markets.
At Farnborough International Airshow the prime minister signalled the government’s commitment to the aerospace industry, announcing £343 million in R&D projects and paving the way for a new Aerospace Sector Deal.
Overall our four industries now employ 380,000 people in communities in every part of the UK, generating £41 billion a year in exports and total turnover of £74 billion. These sectors are also committed to the future of high value manufacturing, employing 12,000 apprentices and putting major investment into innovation, research and development.
Following its launch in 2017, Team UK represented the Defence Growth Partnership at Farnborough International Airshow, launching the new Defence Enterprise Export Programme to boost the skills of export specialists in the sector. The Defence Secretary has also launched a new Combat Air Strategy, and a consortium of companies in the UK is working with the Ministry of Defence on a future combat aircraft.
Industry needs important issues around regulation, customs and the transition arrangement to be addressed creatively and pragmatically, making sure that our sectors can maximise the benefits to the UK of the global growth opportunities that lie ahead.