Merci, monsieur le président.
The Canadian aerospace industry is no less than fifth in the world. In 2009 it produced $22 billion in revenue, 80% of which was generated through exports. Since 2009, it has employed 79,000 Canadians, 46% of them in Quebec, 28% in Ontario, 17% in western Canada, and 10% in Atlantic Canada. It's an industry that is spread over the country.
Aerospace is a poster child for the new knowledge-based economy. The key message I want to give to you today is that we need to make sure our growth continues.
Our companies are undisputed leaders in sectors like regional aircraft, business aircraft, helicopters, small turbine engines, flight and training simulators, satellites, robotics, fleet maintenance, landing gear, avionics and composite materials, to name but a few.
Our expertise in aerospace is the envy of many larger nations, and we are proud of it.
In order to remain competitive, and because we believe in the importance of reducing our environmental footprint, we are working at the greening of our industry through the green aviation R and D network, GARDN, a business-led centres of excellence program with a budget of approximately $23 million, $12 million of that coming from the federal government.
Many of you have heard the industry position on the government's decision to acquire 65 F-35 aircraft. Indeed, we are determined to optimize the benefits that our industry and Canadians will get from participating in Lockheed Martin's global supply chain being developed over the next 24 months.
It is very important to note that the expertise and knowledge we gain through our participation in this military program will be applicable to the great civilian platforms of the future.
But GARDN, and even an optimized participation in the F-35, will not guarantee our long-term competitiveness in the globally competitive environment. The forecast demand is estimated to reach $3.2 trillion over the next 20 years for 30,000 aircraft.
This demand represents extraordinary growth potential for our industry, as long as we work together to forge a strong partnership between industry, governments, the public, the education sector and workers' representatives.
In order to the reap the benefits of the growing demand, we have to be ready to present new technologies to be integrated in the future major platforms that will operate in the coming decades.
Our key point today is that our member companies are currently working on three technology demonstrator projects: low-cost composite manufacturing of structures; electric engines and noise reduction of turbofan engines; and advanced engine systems. These are collaborative efforts. To continue competing to access this growing demand, we need government support on this, and I'll come back to that in a minute.
Space is an extremely important part of the industry. We all know about the Canadarm, but many of you also know that RADARSAT-2 plays a role in monitoring environmental indicators, in ensuring our sovereignty in the Arctic, and in precision agriculture, to name a few.
There is no doubt that there is an imminent need to develop and support a comprehensive aerospace strategy, a clear vision of Canada's ambitions regarding aerospace, including a well-funded space plan, in partnership with the stakeholders.
Our immediate demands to you today consist of the funding for what I've mentioned: the technology demonstrator projects, which require $40 million per project for a total of $120 million.
In conclusion, given the global growth in demand for aircraft over the next 20 years, our opportunity is nothing less than to double the size of this sector to create jobs for all Canadians. The risk of not playing hard is losing ground rapidly.
Merci, monsieur le président.