WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA) today said a new independent consultant’s report demonstrates that building the military’s new midair refueling aircraft in the United States will translate into some 71,000 jobs across the United States. Of that total, Cantwell said, Boeing Co. estimates that some 12,000 tanker jobs will be based in Washington state at Boeing and its nearly 70 Washington-based suppliers.
“The great thing about our aerospace industrial base is that it translates into good jobs and long-term employment in Washington state and around the country,” Senator Cantwell said. “This report demonstrates that having a U.S.-based contractor build the tanker aircraft will protect and generate engineering and manufacturing jobs in Washington and around the country for twenty to thirty years. Keeping the U.S. industrial base strong is also critical to our national security, particularly our aerospace industry.”
The study by the independent consulting firm Sonecon, LLC, released today, said that “If Boeing develops and produces the tanker, it should lead to the creation of an estimated 62,605 to 70,706 U.S. jobs over the life of the contract.” That includes engineering-intensive work in the early going and increasing fabrication and assembly work as the contract matures. Boeing Co., currently the only aerospace firm that has said it will bid for the tanker contract, estimates that some 12,000 jobs will be created or preserved in Washington state as a result of the tanker program.
Cantwell said that strong oversight at the Pentagon and in Congress will ensure that the taxpayer and the warfighter get the best value for the dollar, even if Boeing ends up being the sole contractor to bid on the tanker program. Boeing management and labor have assured Cantwell that the bulk of the tanker work would be done in Washington state, and at Boeing’s other main 767 facilities in St. Louis and Wichita, KN.
A copy of the tanker jobs study can be found at: http://www.sonecon.com/studies.php.