Guest blog post by Suresh Kumar, Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Trade Promotion and Director General of the U.S. and Foreign Commercial Service
When people think of Canada they often think of hockey, moose, and cold weather, not aircraft. In fact, Canada's aerospace industry is the fifth largest in the world ($22.2 billion in revenues in 2009) and the United States is Canada's largest supplier of aircraft parts and components. Bombardier Aerospace, a Canadian manufacturer of commercial aircraft and business jets, has grown to be one of the top four aircraft manufacturers in the world, behind Boeing, Airbus, and Brazil’s Embraer. Canada’s geographic proximity, open market economy and stable business climate make it an attractive market for U.S. aerospace companies.
To help U.S. companies take advantage of these export opportunities, I’m in Canada leading 21 companies on a three-day U.S. Aerospace Supplier and Investment Mission. On the mission, we announced commercial signings worth $1.34 billion in U.S. contracts with Canadian aerospace firms, a figure representing over $800 million in U.S. export content.
These newly signed commercial deals are a crucial part of our effort to strengthen the economy and will make an important contribution to manufacturing and job growth across the United States.The aerospace sector is truly crucial to the economic future of both the U.S. and Canada, and top companies in both countries understand that long-term success is dependent upon a highly adaptive global supply chain.
Canada and the United States share the world's largest and most dynamic commercial relationship, and U.S. companies on this mission are ready to do business with the latest and most innovative aerospace technologies. Through the National Export Initiative, President Obama is committed to doubling overall U.S. exports by 2015, and expanding cross-border trade with Canada is key to fostering mutual economic growth and competitiveness.
How important is U.S.-Canadian trade? To put it in perspective, U.S. trade with Canada exceeds total U.S. trade with the 27 countries of the European Union combined. Canada is the number one export market for 36 of our 50 states and is among the top five export markets for another ten states.
As the world's fifth-largest aerospace market, Canada offers many exciting opportunities for U.S. aerospace exports. On average, Canadian aerospace companies purchased 55 percent of their inputs from the United States in 2009 and total U.S. aerospace exports to Canada in 2009 were approximately $6 billion. Canada is a world leader in business and regional aircraft, commercial helicopters, turbine engines, flight simulators, avionics, and a broad range of aircraft systems, components and equipment. These subsectors represent significant opportunities for U.S. aerospace companies to expand their participation in the Canadian supply chain and boost their exports.