The Society of British Aerospace Companies (SBAC) today (07 July) welcomes the Government's announcement of the intended Strategic Defence Review (SDR) for the next parliament, and encourages the review to seek input from industry.
In addition to the critical factors of security for the nation, SBAC is keen to ensure that the SDR will recognise that the UK defence industry, by the Government's own criteria, is one of the top three sectors for rebalancing the UK economy towards hi-tech, hi-value industries.
Ian Godden, SBAC Chief Executive, said:
"We welcome the Government's recognition of the urgent need for an SDR, which SBAC has been calling for quite some time now, and encourage the Government to seek the input and expertise of our native defence industry in the formulation of this review. Employing 305,000 people and with an annual turnover of over £35bn the defence industry is a UK manufacturing success story.
"Contrary to popular belief, the UK defence industry's potential for investment will accelerate the UK economy, not drain it. It provides a tremendous return on the nation's investment, with productivity 15 per cent higher than the UK manufacturing average and Gross Value Added shown to be significantly higher than the national average for manufacturing.
"With UK defence R&D investment being at 15 per cent of national spend at £3.4bn, the UK, according to a soon-to-be-published report from Oxford Economics, can see a multiplier of roughly 2.3, meaning that a notional Government investment of £100m would create £227m of value elsewhere in the economy. We are an industry providing security for the nation, the economy and the future."