Local Aerospace Sector Discovers £34 Billion of EU Funding

Invest Northern Ireland today encouraged companies and academical institutions involved in the local aerospace sector to take advantage of £34 billion (€50.5 billion) of EU funding for research projects.

Available under the EU Seventh Framework Programme (FP7), the funding aims to encourage and support companies of all sizes, in all sectors, to actively engage in collaborative research projects which will ultimately increase competitiveness and growth.

Today’s event was attended by over 50 people from the local aerospace sector and follows similar FP7 events hosted by Invest NI. Key speakers included representatives from Bombardier Aerospace, the Basque Aerospace Cluster, the Department of Trade and Industry, the Aerospace and Defence Industries, Europe, as well as the Head of Aeronautics Research for the EU.

Speaking at the event, Jeremy Fitch, Invest NI’s Managing Director of Clients and Business International said:

“Knowledge and innovation are key factors in driving industrial competitiveness. Where traditional sectors can no longer compete on cost, they can add value by engaging in R&D and the commercialisation of research.

“In particular, the aerospace sector can benefit greatly from a collaborative approach to innovation and knowledge transfer - this is where FP7 can help. I hope that the expert advice offered by this event will stimulate further research opportunities, ensure that this region taps into the £34 billion of funding and, ultimately that we encourage EU wide collaborative opportunities which will deliver positive results to local businesses and the economy.