U.S. Aviation maintenance trade highlights economic risks of industry restrictions
Aug 31, 2009 – A new study by the Aeronautical Repair Station Association (ARSA) provides fresh insights about the aviation maintenance (MRO) industry's economic footprint and impact on the U.S. economy.
Aug 31, 2009 – A new study by the Aeronautical Repair Station
Association (ARSA) provides fresh insights about the aviation
maintenance (MRO) industry's economic footprint and impact on the U.S.
economy. ARSA is an international trade association representing MRO
The report prepared by AeroStrategy, an Ann Arbor, Michigan-based
management consultancy, determined that spending in the global MRO
market exceeded $50 billion in 2008, with North America (the U.S. and
Canada) accounting for $19.4 billion of the total. When induced and
related economic effects are considered, the MRO industry's impact on
the U.S. economy is $39 billion per year.
AeroStrategy found that North America is a major net exporter of
aviation maintenance services, enjoying a $2.4 billion positive balance
of trade in this arena. While North America is a slight net
importer of heavy airframe maintenance services, it has $1.4 billion
and $1.2 billion trade surpluses in the engine overhaul and component
maintenance services markets, respectively. The U.S.
competitive advantage in these two areas has important economic
benefits because one dollar of spending on airframe heavy maintenance
generates just $1.38 in additional economic activity, while a dollar
spent on engine overhaul and component maintenance services generates
$1.85 and $1.67, respectively.
The report also found there are nearly 4,200 firms with more than
200,000 employees are involved in the civil MRO market in the United
States. Eighty-five percent of those companies are small and
medium-size enterprises, which account for 21 percent of all industry
ARSA commissioned the study in part to better understand the
consequences of legislation that would make it harder for aviation
maintenance companies to serve international airlines. Of particular
note is the aviation bill passed by the U.S. House of Representatives
earlier this year that the European Union has said violates existing
treaties. The EU has threatened to retaliate against
U.S. companies if it becomes law.
"We now have a better understanding than ever about how small companies
and their employees in communities throughout the United States are
tied to the global marketplace." ARSA Executive Director Sarah MacLeod
said. "Congress should be looking for ways to make it easier for these
U.S. companies to serve foreign customers, not trying to hamstring a
highly-competitive sector of our economy."
The study is part of ARSA's Positive Publicity Campaign, a muli-tiered
effort aimed at increasing visibility and messaging for the aviation
maintenance industry. The campaign's initial step was a survey of
public opinion on the aviation maintenance community. Completed by
Strat@comm, a Washington, DC-based strategic communications firm, the
survey revealed an integral tie between public knowledge of aviation
maintenance and corresponding support for industry initiatives.
The full ARSA/AeroStrategy report is available at http://www.arsa.org/node/586.