The US Aerospace Industries Association (AIA) estimates that the country's aerospace industry sales will grow by 5.3% in 2015, but is not backing down on a call on the US government to boost defense spending.

The AIA's annual forecast expects aerospace sales to grow to $240 billion in 2015, up from a preliminary $228 billion expected for 2014.

Civil aircraft sales will continue to contribute the greatest share, with the AIA forecasting that such sales will top $79.8 billion in 2015. Military aircraft sales will contribute $54.5 billion and space sales $52.3 billion. Related aerospace products and services are expected to net about $33.6 billion and missiles $20.2 billion.

AIA is forecasting aerospace industry profits of $25.5 billion in 2014, up from $22.2 billion in 2013.

Even with the expected growth in aerospace sales, AIA is calling for US authorities to increase defense spending. The organisation today presented results of a poll, conducted on their behalf, which found that 69% of registered voters want the US government to spend more on defense.

US Congress members who ignore the survey results do so at their own peril, says AIA chief executive Marion Blakey today, directing her message at incoming members of the 114th Congress, which convenes from 3 January 2015. “The American people are fed up with officials for failing to listen.”

The survey was conducted by telephone among more than 800 registered voters in mid-November.

US President Barack Obama signed into law a $1.1 trillion omnibus spending bill late on 16 December. The bill includes more than $550 billion for defense spending, of which $490 billion is in base discretionary funding while $64 billion is allocated for emergency overseas contingency operations funding.

Aside from calling for increased defense spending, AIA is also urging Congress to pass long-term reauthorisations for the Federal Aviation Administration and US Export-Import Bank.

Current law that funds the FAA will expire in end-September 2015. Industry players have long expressed frustration with the uncertainty of funding for the FAA, which was temporarily extended dozens of times previously. Ex-Im is being funded until 30 June 2015, before which the US Congress must act to keep the bank operating.

Source: Cirium Dashboard