Almost 70 representatives from aerospace firms across the globe attended a reception hosted by Invest Northern Ireland last night as part of the UK / China Aviation Working Group visit to Northern Ireland.
The trade initiative, led by UKTI, involved major UK aerospace companies presenting the best in UK aviation technologies for potential involvement in the Chinese wide body aircraft programme. The long-standing Aviation Working Group, which is a sub-group of the UK-China Joint Economic and Trade Commission (JETCO), has a considerable focus on sustainable aviation through emerging technologies and advanced engineering.
Commenting on the delegation’s visit, Invest NI Chairman Mark Ennis, said: Last week’s State Visit by President Xi emphasised the growing global partnership that UK has with China. As a global leader in aerospace technology, Northern Ireland is therefore a fitting location for the Aviation Working Group to meet.
“We have over 60 local companies employing over 8,500 people working at the leading edge of advanced aerospace design and manufacturing. This occasion provides an opportunity for this NI cluster to build relationships with the major players involved in developing future jet programmes in China.
“Industry and government have a joint strategy to double the size of the Northern Ireland Aerospace sector to £2billion per year and increase employment by an additional 4,000 jobs by 2024. Trade initiatives such as this are a valuable tool in encouraging greater internationalisation in this important sector for our economy.”