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AIA PRESIDENT DECRIES GROWING NATIONALIZATION OF AEROSPACE INDUSTRY

 WASHINGTON, Dec. 16 /PRNewswire/ -- Don Fuqua, president of the Aerospace Industries Association (AIA), called for the government to correct an inequitable situation created by the growing nationalization of the U.S. aerospace industry. His remarks were made at AIA's 28th annual Year-end Review and Forecast Luncheon today in Washington.
 Referring to activity occurring under the benign umbrella of what the government calls "depot maintenance," Fuqua said that the Department of Defense spends more than $20 billion annually on overhaul and maintenance as well as modifications, conversions, system upgrades and service life extension programs. According to Fuqua, by far the major portion of the work is performed at 36 government facilities by 150,000 workers.
 "In other words," said Fuqua, "there is a vast government- operated industrial complex duplicating the capability of the aerospace/defense industry and competing with private industry."
 Fuqua also identified expanded export sales and diversification as potential growth areas that could help the industry to offset a projection for declining sales levels for the rest of the decade.
 "An increase in activity levels in any or all of these areas," said Fuqua, "will significantly improve our ability to maintain the industrial base that is absolutely essential to the twin national goals of enhanced competitiveness and a restructured but still strong system of defense."
 The industry's export volume is almost three times the level of a decade ago, according to Fuqua, and there is reason to believe that this growth will continue with some help from the government. "This encourages the belief that the industry can continue to increase its export volume, given the essential U.S. government support and an expanding global aerospace market in an improved world economic environment," said Fuqua.
 The final area identified by Fuqua, diversification, involves branching out into new product lines where the existing high tech capability of the aerospace industry can be effectively employed. According to Fuqua, President-elect Bill Clinton's multi billion- dollar-a-year plan to build a 21st century technology infrastructure that addresses new national communications, transportation and environmental needs "would create large markets and thereby sharply accelerate industry's efforts to broaden its sphere of activity.
 AIA is the trade association representing the nation's manufacturers of commercial, military and business aircraft, helicopters, aircraft engines, missiles, spacecraft and related components and equipment.
 -0- 12/16/92
 /CONTACT: Alexis Allen of the Aerospace Industries Association, 202-371-8544/


CO: Aerospace Industries Association ST: District of Columbia IN: ARO SU:

TW -- DC004 -- 7748 12/16/92 13:17 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Dec 16, 1992
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