Aerospace technology has often been described as the ‘jewel in the crown’ of British manufacturing. The UK has been Europe’s number one manufacturer for some time, and the sector is key within the wider scope of the European Union itself.
Figures suggested by the ADS Group that represents Britain’s aerospace industry show that some 230,000 people are employed in this sector alone, spread amongst 3,000 different firms.
The government has said it expects the civil aerospace market to grow exponentially over the coming years, and by 2031 it could be worth in excess of $4trillion US dollars. Industry experts see demands for air travel increasing steadily and going hand-in-hand with a demand for greener aircraft. 27,000 new passenger aircraft will be required, as well as 40,000 commercial helicopters.
In order to further consolidate UK strength in the aerospace market, the government has teamed up with industry players to create the Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI). The institute aims to bring the best minds in academic and industry research together in one setting, focusing on researching and developing technology needed to create the next generation of energy saving and noise-reduced aircraft. Several major firms will help form the Institute, including names such as Airbus and the aerospace division of Rolls-Royce.
We caught up with Sam Rickard of payroll and tax advice experts PayMatters for his views on the ATI and UK government’s approach to the aerospace industry: “Its crystal clear that Whitehall sees aerospace as being at the very heart of Britain’s economic portfolio and a vital influence on how we approach policy decisions in the EU, and with good reason. We are an EU market leader, and currently do more trade with Germany than the US and France, and aerospace is key to that.”
Sam continued “The advent of the ATI is crucial to help the UK maintain its position at the forefront of technological advances in a constantly evolving industry. We have seen the Government inject £1billion into the sector, matched by industry heavy-hitters, and we can hope that the ATI will help create upwards of 115,000 jobs in high-value aerospace positions. The jobs boon will be excellent news for Britain’s skilled contractors, as technicians, IT experts and engineers will all be likely to benefit.”
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