Washington announces new aerospace push

Washington state has opened a new “Aerodesk” in London to help the state’s aerospace suppliers capture more European contracts — and to recruit European companies to do more work in Washington.

That’s one of the stories reported in the first edition of the Washington State Quarterly Aerospace Bulletin, a new publication of the Washington Department of Commerce.

The new Aerodesk opened for business in July, and plans to send representatives to air shows in Europe, including the recent Airtec 2009 conference in Frankfurt and the upcoming Aerosolutions 2009 conference in Bordeaux, France. Its goal is to “identify B-2-B and joint venture opportunities, sales channels and sales representatives,” while also assisting European companies that are “considering a more permanent presence in Washington” by providing them with “access to legal information, site selection options, customized incentives and business network introductions.”

In addition to the work in Europe, the newsletter also reports that the state Commerce Department is “actively working to develop supplier opportunities” for Washington state companies interested in winning work on the new Chinese airline initiative, the Comac C919.

Washington is the heart of the U.S. aerospace industry, the newsletter notes. In 2008, there were 88,000 Washington residents working in the industry, producing $33.8 billion worth of goods and services.

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