AIA Calls for National Security Cooperation Strategy to Improve Defense Export Review Process

Arlington, Va. — On May 29, the Aerospace Industries Association (AIA) delivered a letter to Secretary of State Pompeo advocating for new measures to strengthen the interagency security cooperation enterprise, including a National Security Cooperation Strategy to help implement National Security Presidential Memorandum Regarding Conventional Arms Transfer Policy (NSPM-10). The letter was signed by AIA’s Chairman, Dr. Thomas A. Kennedy, Chairman and CEO of the Raytheon Company; AIA’s Vice Chairman, William M. Brown, Chairman, President and CEO of Harris Corporation; and AIA President and CEO Eric Fanning.

“Our industry is competing against our adversaries in a global defense marketplace where every export opportunity is a zero-sum, time sensitive competition with an enduring impact on American influence, security and our defense industrial base,” said Kennedy, Brown and Fanning. “AIA and our member companies believe the ultimate key to the success of U.S. security cooperation is to increase the speed of review, approval and advocacy for defense exports that advance America’s foreign policy, national and economic security interests.”

AIA’s detailed proposals include a plan that identifies the specific transactions that achieve U.S. security cooperation priorities, and a senior-level oversight mechanism to ensure accountability for the rapid review of priority defense exports.

AIA has championed the need for security cooperation enterprise reform for a number of years in discussions with the Administration, Congress, academia, think tanks and other industry groups. After extensive review, the National Defense Industrial Association endorsed AIA’s reform recommendations. “The National Defense Industrial Association (NDIA) strongly supports these defense export reform recommendations modernizing the process to sell overseas in accordance with U.S. national security and economic strategies,” said Gen Hawk Carlisle, President & CEO, National Defense Industrial Association. “Industry needs these reforms to thrive in a time of great power competition.”

In their letter, Kennedy, Brown and Fanning committed AIA’s support and engagement with the Administration well beyond the 60-day deadline for the government’s initial action plan to achieve a more efficient and transparent security cooperation enterprise.