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Our 2013 Strategic Plan ensures that AIA provides the highest quality representation for our members. Within the five goals listed below, we have developed a detailed set of 16 targets that will measure our progress and ensure that our members are represented equitably and effectively.
Within these focus areas we have developed a detailed set of goals, targets and critical milestones that will measure our progress and ensure that our members and the business sectors in which they operate - national security, civil aviation, space and cyber - are represented equitably and effectively. Provided below is a discussion of the key themes reflected in goals, targets and milestones throughout the plan.
Under the Second to None (S2N) Campaign, AIA has made clear throughout 2012 that the impact of sequestration under Congress’ Budget Control Act of 2011 ($1.2 trillion in deficit reductions, with $500 billion to be absorbed by defense alone) will be damaging in many ways for America and leave much of our industry and the broader economy reeling from the blow.
Since 2011, we have been able to shape the national debate about the potential impacts of sequestration to national security, other important government programs and services and to the economy. The data from AIA-commissioned studies drew particular attention to the likely jobs losses resulting from sequestration. This focus on the economic impacts broadly will remain a pillar of our advocacy efforts throughout 2013. We all recognize that even if sequestration is repealed at some juncture, the defense budget in particular will be a target for additional cuts. To ensure that any debate on defense spending and the overall budget for national security is well informed, we will leverage internal and external experts on a variety of subjects, including modernization requirements, implications for the warfighter, impacts on our industrial base and the future of innovation and R&D.
The Joint Chiefs of Staff and Secretaries of Defense Panetta and Hagel have spoken out against sequestration defense cuts, warning of their potentially devastating impact. The dialogue initiated between AIA and senior Pentagon leaders under the AIA-initiated Defense Industrial Base Task Force in 2012 was important in aligning Pentagon and industry messaging and targets to combat sequestration. One of AIA’s main priorities in 2013 is to continue the regular government-industry senior dialogue begun under previous DOD leadership. A strong and vital partnership with Secretary of Defense Hagel and his team will be crucial to maintaining industrial base capabilities in a time of increasing budget constraints.
Our primary goal for 2013 is to avoid further cuts to the aerospace and defense budget. We will also: promote fair and equitable, market-based contractor compensation practices among comparable industries; work for extensive, targeted reform of the defense acquisition system and the export control process; extend a collaborative dialogue with the administration and Congress on defense exports; and, bolster the International Forum on Business Ethical Conduct.
Dwindling federal budgets also present significant challenges for our industry’s efforts to attract and retain a robust workforce. In 2013, AIA will expand and improve the effectiveness of our work to inspire, prepare and attract the future workforce by promoting science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) academic curricula, extracurricular STEM programs and workforce skills training.
While the quality and reliability of materials used in the production of defense and aerospace technologies are vital, industry continues to focus on balancing the environmental, health and safety risks posed by some materials. Manufacturers are actively exploring ways to minimize their use, while delivering similar performance. In 2013, AIA will work with its members, DOD, NASA, FAA, EPA and the international community to expand its already substantial dialogue in these areas.
Large cuts to the U.S. defense budget are making some manufacturers look for ways to increase production and sales of non-defense products, possibly benefiting the U.S. civil aviation sector. Driven by a five percent uptick in airline and cargo traffic globally, 2011-2012 orders for commercial aircraft are once again at pre-recession levels; and while the domestic business jet and general aviation market is still weak, there are strong indications of growth internationally.
Emerging market growth in places like Asia, the Middle East and Latin America plus the need for more fuel efficient aircraft should keep the industry in the positive growth range for awhile. AIA is taking steps to ensure that the industry is positioned to take advantage of new growth when it occurs in 2013 and beyond. One such step is our vigorous support of FAA’s Next Generation Air Transportation System, which is the key enabling investment for the U.S. and other nations to safely and efficiently meet the projected increase in demand for air transport services. Another goal is to work aggressively with the U.S. government trade financing, promotion, and enforcement agencies to protect and grow market access for U.S. civil aviation products.
The sluggish economy, unstable oil prices, and sequestration, continue to have a chilling effect on the market. And while airlines have been profitable the last two years, credit is still hard to come by.
The industry is also concerned about the potential impact $627 million in sequestration cuts will have on FAA’s current operations and its implementation of NextGen. FAA has never experienced a reduction of this magnitude. In August, 2012, the AIA-commissioned Econsult report “Economic Impacts of FAA Budget Sequestration on the U.S. Economy” showed that sequestration could have a dramatically negative effect on the civil aviation industry, affecting both passenger travel and air cargo.
In 2013, AIA will continue to push against budgetary cuts to FAA and support continued U.S. investment in NextGen and innovative financing for equipage. AIA will also work closely with the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to promote harmonized development of satellite-based air traffic management systems worldwide. Keeping NextGen on course will enable airspace capacity growth and efficiencies that will accommodate forecast increases in commercial and general aviation traffic.
After more than four years of short term funding and authorization extensions, Congress passed the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012. AIA worked hard with other stakeholders, the FAA and congressional committee staff on many provisions in the bill and we continue to work with all parties to meet the deadlines and mandates included in the bill, including those related to integration of UAS into the national airspace system by 2015.
Other threats to civil aviation’s growth are potential environmental regulations both in the U.S. and globally. AIA is heavily engaged in the work to ensure that global noise and emissions regulations do not burden or cause a competitive disadvantage to our members. We will advocate for continued funding for NASA’s research into environmental mitigation technology and FAA’s CLEEN program and Commercial Aviation Alternative Fuel Initiative (CAAFI).
AIA will continue to work with operators to combat the EU’s Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) by helping to educate the public and policymakers on the tremendous technological strides manufacturers have made and will continue to make improving fuel efficiency and reducing CO2 emissions and noise.
We will work with FAA, DHS and other agencies to ensure a civil aviation regulatory environment supporting continued innovation and a global level playing field. By working across borders to secure global harmonization of standards and regulations, and to increase efficiencies in government approval processes, we will ensure an international marketplace for our products.
Finally, in 2013, AIA passed to ASD, the ICCAIA secretariat and chairmanship duties we have held the past two years. With the addition of the Russian manufacturers association, Union of Aviation Industrialists, ICCAIA will need to expand its representation and involvement at United Nations venues such as the UNFCCC and the ITU. AIA will continue to play a leading role to ensure ICCAIA’s global interests are well represented at ICAO.
U.S. civil space programs made impressive progress in 2012 as exemplified by the success of SpaceX in delivering two cargo spacecraft to the International Space Station (ISS) and the safe landing of the Curiosity Mars Science Lab on the red planet. Many other space programs involving AIA member companies also made steady progress in meeting the needs of civil, commercial and national security customers and developing new cutting edge capabilities.
In 2013, there will likely be a new multiyear NASA Authorization Bill. AIA will work through the authorization and appropriation process to promote stability for the nation’s civil space program, and adequate resources for the civil space goals agreed to by Congress and the White House in the 2010 NASA Authorization bill. To do this, we will emphasize that civil space programs are not simply consumption; they are long term investments in our future that have demonstrably fostered economic growth while improving and even saving lives.
AIA has recently released a new report, Space in our World which highlights the tremendous benefits our nation and the world have reaped from the space investments of the past fifty-five years. We will use this report and other mechanisms such as white papers, Capitol Hill events and other means to educate new and returning elected and appointed officials on the benefits from space programs and the need for continued investment.
AIA will also work to build on its success in supporting funding for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s weather satellite programs which provide over 90 percent of the data needed to make accurate weather forecasts. These programs may encounter risky coverage gaps if current programs are not adequately funded.
The budget outlook for U.S government military space programs is extremely uncertain due to pressures to cut federal spending. AIA is committed to emphasizing the crucial role that U.S. space and missile defense programs play in security and technological competitiveness. We will work with member companies to mitigate the impact of sequestration, both by devising creative ways to help the government meet budget requirements while working to broaden the industry’s ability to offset government space business cuts through export reforms and promoting space system and component exports.
A robust space industrial base plays a critical role in meeting U.S. military and intelligence requirements. While the Administration has been proactive in trying to understand the implications of defense cutbacks on the national security space industrial base, more work will be needed to maintain budget stability and predictability, as well as the health of lower tier manufacturers. Efforts to disaggregate new space capabilities need to be balanced with execution of the ongoing military space recapitalization and a commitment to research and development of new technologies.
U.S. leadership in space was earned at great expense but it must not be taken for granted; in the past year alone, China surpassed the U.S. in the number of space launches it conducted and it continues to invest in new launch facilities while new nations from Iran to North Korea work to develop space capabilities. AIA’s space member companies remain focused on the challenges at hand. AIA will grow its role as the leading space industry voice, including national security organizations such as the National Reconnaissance Office, to engage the U.S. government space community at all levels.
Even as our nation reduces its spending on national defense by over half a trillion dollars in this decade as a consequence of the first phase of the Budget Control Act and the FY13 Sequestration, cyber threats to our nation are increasing. Each day, thousands of cyber attacks and intrusions are made on our nation’s military, civilian infrastructure and private businesses. AIA will work to support government investments to counter these threats, foster STEM education programs to alleviate shortages of trained cybersecurity professionals and work as an industry to develop and refine standards and voluntary mechanisms to reduce risks without inflexible regulations
AIA will be worked across divisions within AIA as befits the ubiquitous nature of the threat and the breadth of our required industry response.