JUNE 18, 2013


Good morning. Ambassador Rivkin, Mr. Kallman, distinguished Senators, Governors, Vice Admiral Landay, Deputy Assistant Secretary McCormick, Deputy Assistant Secretary Brown, ladies and gentlemen,

I am honored and delighted to be here today to open the U.S. International Pavilion at the 2013 Paris Air Show.

I am certain that the Wright Brothers would be astounded by what is on display. From their twelve second, 120-foot flight, we’ve enjoyed decades of intercontinental air travel, the benefits of interplanetary space probes, and now a new era of commercial space launches and passenger flights. The U.S. aerospace sector has been at the forefront of that progression from that first day of powered flight.

Not only have they created the technology and services that revolutionized the way we conduct both business and leisure, they’ve contributed to our defense of freedom and provided millions of Americans with high-paying, rewarding jobs. In fact, the industry created by that flight in 1903 is one of the most important in the United States today.

The U.S. aerospace industry contributed $106 billion in export sales to the U.S. economy in 2012, up $17 billion over 2011, and it led the economy in the net export of manufactured goods.  The industry’s positive trade balance of $65 billion is also the largest trade surplus of any manufacturing industry. In addition, the U.S. aerospace sector supports more jobs through exports than any other industry.

Make no mistake -- America’s aerospace industry is one of our great strengths as a nation. All of us can see that as we view the amazing products and services being offered here today. The more than 250 American companies represented in the U.S. International Pavilion demonstrate the innovation and hard work that sustain our leadership in this sector.

This is what America is best at -- and what we need to strive for. We must continually upgrade our products and work to ensure that we set the standard for innovation, quality, and service for the entire world. The Paris Air Show and this Pavilion provide the ideal forum for showing our partners and buyers the best we have to offer.

Free and fair trade is part and parcel of producing the best, of innovating, of challenging ourselves. Our proper role as leaders is to promote and support the platform that makes this beneficial competition possible and most productive.

Another role of the U.S. Government is to help ensure that there are robust controls on the export of sensitive technologies to countries, end uses, and end users of concern. The Obama Administration has done an amazing job in reforming the Cold War era export control system. These reforms are vital to our national security, economic security, and foreign policy interests. They will increase inter-operability with our close allies. They will reduce the incentives to design out US.-origin content. And they will allow the agencies to focus their resources on the transactions that are of the most concern. I look forward to promoting and explaining these reforms over the next week and to supporting all the American companies at the Paris Air Show.

We salute all of the exhibitors here today and the entire aerospace industry for its innovation, its hard work, and its vision. We will support you in your quest to create the products and jobs of the future.

I would like to thank Kallman Worldwide for so ably organizing this U.S. International Pavilion, as well as the Aerospace Industries Association for their role in supporting and promoting this vital industry.

Thank you very much, and I wish you success at this show.


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