The US Aerospace Industries Association (AIA) has announced its 10 most important issues for 2000 as well as seven long-term issues that it hopes will be taken up by candidates in this year's presidential elections.

Topping the list are modernising export controls and increasing funding for aerospace research and development (R&D). John Douglass, president and chief executive officer of the AIA, which represents US aerospace companies, says: "The current system of licensing exports is antiquated and in desperate need of reform.

As aerospace becomes increasingly dependent on access to the global economy, a waiting period of four months or more for an export license can hamstring our companies to the point where they could begin losing market share to our overseas' competitors."

The AIA is also seeking an extra $50 billion over five years from Congress for aerospace R&D. Douglass says the extra funding is needed to ensure that the industry continues to act as a major engine of US economic growth.

Other top 10 issues include the development of a national plan for launch range infrastructure; achieving a US/ European Union consensus on aircraft issues; implementation of a single system of e-commerce for aerospace suppliers; and improvement of promptness of government payments.

Source: Flight Daily News