Marcus Jadotte is the U.S. Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Industry & Analysis. 

Congratulations to the planners and exhibitors of the 2016 Singapore Airshow! We at the U.S. Department of Commerce are thrilled to support this outstanding event.  

The Asia-Pacific region is one of the fastest-growing markets for aviation. We believe that the Singapore Airshow provides an unmatched opportunity to form partnerships with companies and governments across this dynamic region. In 2015, U.S. aerospace companies exported more than $144 billion worth of equipment to markets around the world. In that same year, approximately $48 billion in exports went to customers in the Asia-Pacific region, a figure that will likely increase as the region expands infrastructure for aviation and defense. This is why, once again, the United States has the largest international presence at the Singapore Airshow. 

These opportunities are also why President Obama pursued the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). The TPP is a 21st-century, high-standard trade agreement that will benefit American workers and the economy and also deliver unprecedented opportunities for companies across the Asia-Pacific region.

The TPP represents a generational opportunity to expand market access for businesses in the Pacific Rim by eliminating all manufacturing tariffs, removing non-tariff barriers, setting a new high standard for global trading rules and leveling the playing field for American workers. 

Once implemented, the TPP will enhance transparency and predictability, which are two critical factors to improving the overall business environment and facilitating global commerce. The agreement will commit partner nations to stronger intellectual property protections as well as clearer rulemaking to prevent the rise of unnecessarily burdensome regulations that impede trade in the region.

In addition, the Trans-Pacific Partnership will lead to an overall increase in economic activity and trade for this region. As economies grow, there will be a natural, corresponding rise in demand for transportation-related products. As a result, we believe that the TPP will be particularly good for aerospace manufacturers. To learn more about these opportunities, visit www.trade.gov/fta/tpp/industries/transportation.asp. Many TPP partners have been identified by my aerospace team as top markets for U.S. aerospace parts producers, including Canada, Japan, Australia, Mexico, New Zealand, Malaysia, and, of course, Singapore.

Singapore is already a transportation linchpin for the Asia-Pacific region and a hub for aircraft maintenance. The country is consistently a top market for U.S. aerospace parts exports averaging more than $5.7 billion in parts exports between 2005 and 2014. As a result, Singapore and this show are perfect entry points for American companies exploring the region. 

We at the Commerce Department have many resources available to support U.S. firms pursuing business prospects in Asia. For the Singapore Airshow, we have organized our fifth Aerospace Executive Service Trade Mission, through which we help small- and medium-size companies find agents and distributors, while our industry specialists from across the region provide one-on-one counseling. We were also proud to certify the U.S. International Pavilion, where cutting-edge American firms are on display. As part of our commitment to the Pavilion, we have flown in 14 specialists from 12 countries across the region to provide market intelligence to U.S. exhibitors. 

And, for the first time ever, we are hosting an aviation infrastructure workshop under the Lower Mekong Initiative to complement the show. The two-day workshop will feature aviation and airport management best practices, while highlighting how U.S. companies can bring their technology and expertise to address real-world problems.

Finally, through our domestic and international network of trade specialists, we work to help companies connect directly with potential business partners year-round. My aerospace team can provide counsel and share data and market intelligence to help American companies form their business strategies.

Aerospace is one of America’s most successful exporting stories. This sector already has the highest trade surplus of any manufacturing industry and has had this distinction for many years.

This showcases both the quality of American technology and the strength of our ability to form international partnerships. 

Every day, companies are realizing that success in the aerospace industry requires having a thoughtful plan for targeting opportunities beyond U.S. borders. They know that the highest growth markets for aviation are outside North America, in places like Singapore and the rest of Asia. I’m proud to say that the Commerce Department stands ready and able to help U.S. companies plan their export strategy and address challenges head-on. We look forward to working with our Asia-Pacific partners now and in the future.