Belfast Telegraph

Monday 21 April 2014

Firms to learn about aerospace initiative

Firms involved in the aerospace sector will today gather to learn about the work of the joint Government and industry initiative – the Aerospace Growth Partnership (AGP).

During the session, they will find out how the partnership could help them grow and win new business, at an event at the Northern Ireland Advanced Composites and Engineering Centre (NIACE) in Belfast.

In March the Government and industry published the joint UK Aerospace Industrial Strategy along with a joint £2bn seven-year fund for an Aerospace Technology Institute. The strategy, aimed at promoting long-term growth and boosting the number of high-value jobs in aerospace, will enable the industry to foster innovative technologies, develop new manufacturing processes and a robust supply chain.

A report highlighted the work of companies in the UK. The aerospace sector makes up a major proportion of the Northern Ireland manufacturing base and contributes close to 13% of manufactured exports annually.

The event, which is jointly hosted by Invest NI, Bombardier Aerospace and aerospace trade organisation ADS, is the first in a series of AGP road shows planned across the UK to brief companies on the recently-launched Aerospace Industrial Strategy and the opportunities it presents.

Dr Leslie Orr, ADS NI manager, said 2013 has been an exciting year. "What's important is making sure the benefits of the hard work of the Aerospace Growth Partnership are felt by aerospace companies all over the UK, regardless of location or size." he said.

Gavin Campbell, director of design development at Bombardier Aerospace, added: "In order to compete globally and be in a position to take on higher-value work, companies need to take full advantage of this national strategy, which forms the future direction of the UK aerospace industry.

"As a member of the AGP, we are keen to see Northern Ireland aerospace companies actively contributing to – and benefiting from – the growth of this hugely important sector."