AED Cluster Portugal contributes to the national Recovery Plan

9 March 2021

The Portuguese Recovery and Resilience Plan was in public consultation up to the 1st of March. AED made its contribution to mitigate the economic impact in the Aeronautics, Space and Defence sectors.

Within the scope of the National Recovery and Resilience Plan (PRR), AED Cluster Portugal presented a set of programs for the inclusion of the ASD industries in this strategic document, which indicates the fundamental structural reforms to ensure the exit from the pandemic crisis and guarantee a resilient future for Portugal.

The programs presented by the AED fall within the scope of the components prioritized in the PRR: Investment & Innovation; Qualifications & Skills; Infrastructures; Sustainable Mobility; Industry’s Decarbonization; Hydrogen and Renewables Sources; and 4.0 Industry.

The proposals shown in the Cluster’s contribution intend to capitalize initiatives already underway or launch new actions that promote the rise in the value chains of Portuguese companies in international markets, bringing a high economic return to the country and actively contributing to a better industrial positioning of Portugal in the world.

For this purpose, the Cluster outlined a set of comprehensive and ambitious programs, to be launched in this Recovery Plan. We make known some of the points of each one:

STEPUP4AERO PROGRAM

  • It proposes the capitalization of all investment placed on the national aeronautics industry so far, with the objective of maintaining capital (human and non-human) and avoiding losing the national focus in a sector with high added value and dedicated, almost entirely, to export.
  • Investment in structuring initiatives already in an advanced stage of development, as is the case of the ATL-100 program and other initiatives that may arise, which allow the achievement of short-term results, capable of involving a large part of the national ecosystem around common objectives.

STEPUP4UAV PROGRAM

  • It proposes to take advantage of the new paradigm of UAVs and Urban Air Mobility, in order to strategically position the national industry in these emerging value chains. In the case of the civilian UAVs market, it is growing significantly: with a global volume of around 4.5B€ in 2019, and with perspectives to double in 2025. Particularly for the passenger transport segment, it is estimated that there will be up to 160.000 commercial air taxis in the air by 2050. The Urban Air Mobility passenger industry will then generate revenues of almost 75B€ per year.
  • In this context, the Cluster is already working on developing skills and creating products and services for the passenger transport sector, mainly through the project FLY.PT currently under implementation.

STEPUP4SPACE PROGRAM

  • It proposes to close an investment cycle and bet on the competitiveness of the national Space industry. Portugal is already workinh within this context, by capitalizing its human resources and infrastructures resulting from Portugal’s participation in ESA, since 2000; creating the Portuguese Space Agency and a Space 2030 strategy; and leveraging various National initiatives already underway.
  • Considering that in this sector there is a growing race for access and use of Space, based on new business models, more accessible technologies, new geographical actors and an exponential expansion of the range of satellite information applications, it is important to charge the dividends from Portugal’s investment already made at ESA and entering these supply chains with high added value and exports in a competitive manner, also guaranteeing a positioning on the front line of the so-called New Space.

STEPUP4DEFENCE PROGRAM

  • It proposes to reinforce the capabilities and competences of the Portuguese defense economy and to strategically position the national industry in this sector, which has been the focus of attention, with the recently approved European Defense Fund (EDF), of 7.95B€, a mechanism that it will stimulate greater cooperation in the area of Defence between the various countries of the EU.
  • In this context, particular interest is given to the Naval sector, through the extension of the Continental Platofrm, which will require Portugal to adopt intelligent and differentiating approaches in its control, surveillance and defence capacity, using it as an innovative platform to promote new technological solutions, conventional and unconventional, in the maritime domain.

In an official statement from AED Cluster Portugal, the Board President, Mr. José Neves, concludes:

“In view of all these challenges that we propose, we are fully available to collaborate in the operationalization of the Recovery and Resilience Plan so that it efficiently meets the needs of the sectors, becoming a crucial engine for the creation of added value and for the economic recovery”.

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