Jean Charest hosts AIAC’s Vision 2025 Aerospace Engagement Day in VancouverJanuary 28, 2019
VANCOUVER (British Columbia), January 28, 2019 – Today, former Deputy Prime Minister and Quebec Premier Jean Charest hosted the Aerospace Industries Association of Canada’s (AIAC) Vision 2025 aerospace engagement day in Vancouver, meeting with industry leaders, government officials and educators to begin charting a course for the future of aerospace in Canada.
“Global competition has never been fiercer, and we’re at a turning point where Canada must step up to compete, or risk being left behind,” said Mr. Charest. “British Columbia employs over 9,300 in the aerospace industry and we need to ensure that we’re looking forward, and safeguarding good jobs here, and across Canada.”
Mr. Charest and Jim Quick, AIAC’s President and CEO, met with the Honourable Bruce Ralston, B.C.’s Minister of Jobs, Trade and Technology, and conducted roundtables with students, educators and local aerospace industry leaders. “The aerospace industry is vital to British Columbia and Canada’s economy. We must support it by having a clear vision and providing the necessary needs. It was incredibly valuable to hear the insights, expertise and opinions on how we can come together and ensure a strong, vital aerospace sector that will propel Canada’s economy now and, in the future,” added Mr. Charest.
Today’s engagement day builds on similar outreach events already held in Toronto, Montréal and Winnipeg. Prior to preparing and releasing his Vision 2025 Report this spring, Mr. Charest’s will also hear from Atlantic Canada’s industry, academic and political leaders in Halifax on February 13.
While Canada’s aerospace sector ranks fifth globally and contributed nearly $25 billion to the national economy and almost 190,000 jobs in 2017 alone, a comprehensive strategy to guide the country’s investment in the sector has not been proposed for decades. Vision 2025 will culminate in a report and recommendations that reflect input gathered from the Charest-led discussions in cities with strong aerospace presence, and will provide recommendations to spur growth in the aerospace sector.
“We’re grateful to have an industry champion like Jean Charest lead us with Vision 2025,” said Mr. Quick. “We know that Canadian aerospace is at a critical juncture, and we need a long-term strategy and investment to keep Canada at the forefront of the global aerospace sector.”
Highlights of the aerospace industry in British Columbia:
- BC is uniquely positioned to capitalize on market opportunities with its proximity to the world’s largest aerospace cluster next door in Washington State and to the rapidly growing Asia Pacific region.
- British Columbia is the third largest cluster in Canada with approximately with over 200 companies directly employing over 9,300 workers and nearly 20,000 indirectly.
- BC generates annual revenues of $1.8 billion and direct GDP of $1.63 billion.
AIAC is the national association representing Canada’s aerospace manufacturing and services sector. As the world’s fifth-largest aerospace industry, Canada’s aerospace sector contributes nearly $25B to the economy in GDP, exports 75% of its output, and dedicates over 20% of its activity to research and development (R&D). Aerospace is responsible for the employment of 190,000 Canadians.