Sales boost for UK civil and defence aerospace markets

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Sales in the UK’s civil and defence aerospace markets were up 2.1 per cent to £23.1bn in 2010, according to a report released today.

The report, published by A|D|S, the UK’s aerospace, defence and security trade organisation, shows that, by sector, civil sales were up 1.3 per cent and defence sales up 2.8 per cent.

Employment was reported to be down by four per cent to 96,510, although productivity per employee was up by six per cent. Exports account for the majority of sector turnover at 70 per cent of total.

An 11 per cent fall in orders to £29.1bn has been attributed to a 29 per cent fall in defence orders. Civil orders, however, are up three per cent from £18.5bn to £19bn.

Graham Chisnall, managing director of aerospace and operations at A|D|S, said: ‘Aerospace in the UK has delivered a strong performance in a very tough global climate.

‘Sales growth in 2010 shows that the slow dispersal of a global recession and other issues such as the Icelandic volcanic eruption and extreme weather conditions were not enough to hold the industry back.

‘Further challenges lie ahead, especially on the defence side, but the accelerating recovery in civil aerospace and the long-term record of UK success in this world-leading sector give increasing cause for optimism.’

Survey highlights


Up by 2.1 per cent to £23.1bn.


Continued recruitment will be required due to growth in the sector, as well as a large proportion of the workforce due to retire over the coming years.


Defence exports were up by 4.5 per cent and civil exports rose by 0.5 per cent.


Civil orders rose by three per cent from £18.5bn to £19bn.

Research, development and technology

R&D and R&T spending remained unchanged overall at what are historically low figures.

In the civil sector the figures grew by seven per cent, while in defence they fell by five per cent.

Source: A|D|S