Andy Raynor Dover
Through a federal grant from the State Trade Expansion Program, the Office of International Commerce and its partner at the U.S. Department of Commerce/U.S. Commercial Service sponsored a booth at the Defense and Security Equipment International trade show in September. Michael Polizzotti, an intern with OIC this semester, offers a perspective on the importance of international trade shows.
When we went to London to showcase New Hampshire’s capabilities and prowess in the world of aerospace and defense, we expected our conversations to be two-fold: Describing where, exactly, we are located in the world and what we have to offer a growing industry around the world.
Over the course of our participation in the Defense and Security Equipment International trade show, we were pleasantly surprised by people drawn to our booth to reminisce about their visits to New Hampshire, as they were surprised to learn that our state is such a hub of innovation.
At DSEI, we were joined by our partners from US Commercial Service and the New Hampshire Aerospace and Defense Export Consortium, as well as four companies – AQYR of Hollis; Corfin Industries of Salem; Brazonics of Hampton, and Crusade Group of Manchester. We were among 1,500 vendors at the show, which drew more than 18,000 people, giving us high visibility.
Having a presence at this show is important for these sectors. With aerospace and defense spending increasing in the United States and around the world, New Hampshire is poised to meet the demands of the global marketplace and OIC, and its partner, the New Hampshire Aerospace and Defense Export Consortium, is at the forefront to represent the state and regional businesses as innovative manufacturers and exporters.
NHADEC, a consortium of state and regionally-based aerospace and defense businesses, focuses on fostering opportune foreign markets for its members, through collaboration and global brand messaging. Members range from large scale manufactures, like BAE Systems and GE Aviation, to smaller tier companies.
There are many reasons for the global spending increases. NATO nations, including Poland, Portugal, Greece and others, are increasing their defense budgets. Defense spending is also on the rise in the Middle East and Asia, where military expenditures are projected between 4 percent and 6 percent. The Middle East and Asia-Pacific are driving commercial aerospace growth.
These trends present a great opportunity for New Hampshire.
Here’s why: About 60,000 aerospace and defense related jobs, at over 350 companies across the state, are filled by highly skilled workers. Many of these companies are NHADEC members working to increase the efficiency and competitiveness of the growing aerospace and defense industry.
We can already see that growth. About 9 percent of New Hampshire’s manufacturing GDP is from aerospace and defense. Projections by the Aerospace Industries Association are for 3.8 percent, five-year employment growth in the sector. It also notes that New Hampshire has seen one of the largest percentage increases in dollar growth in the United States’ aerospace and defense industry.
The hard work of the state, NHADEC and its members over the past few years has heightened the Granite State as an aerospace and defense hub of innovation. We look forward to further solidifying the state as a place where innovation and manufacturing technology help to explore the depths of the sea and far reaches of space.
Office of International Commerce