WASHINGTON, DC, July 26, 2010 – Today, the Brookings Institution released a study pointing to Wichita, the home of Bombardier Learjet, Cessna Aircraft Company, and Hawker Beechcraft Corporation, as the leading U.S. city with respect to exports driving Gross Metropolitan Product (GMP).
The report recognizes Wichita’s "aviation cluster" as its main source of exports and points to Cessna’s growth in exports of 166 percent between 2005 and 2008 to developing regions such as Latin America, Asia and the Middle East. Hawker Beechcraft Corporation experienced an increase in exports by more than 390 percent between 2004 and 2009 and accounted for approximately half of the company’s sales in 2008 and 2009.
"This report underscores the critical role that general aviation airplane manufacturing needs to play if the Administration is to meet its goal of boosting exports," said Pete Bunce, GAMA’s president and CEO. "We have lost a significant portion of our workforce during this economic downturn. Our recovery depends on an evermore robust export market for US manufacturers. It is essential that the Administration more fully embrace the general aviation industry and actively promote it as a significant contributor to economic prosperity and quality jobs in this country."
Bunce added, "We call on the Administration to publicly recognize the value of this industry by advancing policies and regulations that support general aviation manufacturing’s recovery and continued growth, which include eliminating barriers to entering new markets and ensuring a level playing field worldwide for the sale and maintenance of general aviation aircraft.”
In his State of the Union address, President Obama called for a new National Export Initiative (NEI) to double U.S. exports over the next five years. The Brookings report points to only four metropolitan areas, including Wichita, which have doubled their exports during the preceeding five years.
“We would welcome a visit from President Obama to Wichita to emphasize the importance of general aviation to the nation’s economy and to promote export growth strategies for the future that will put more Americans to work,” said Bunce.
View the report at: http://www.brookings.edu/reports/2010/0726_exports_istrate_rothwell_katz.aspx