Canada's aerospace industry has climbed to a smoother flight path after the recent turbulence resulting from the global economic slowdown.
Industry revenue last year reached $22.4-billion, a 6.7 per cent increase over 2010, according to the Aerospace Industries Association of Canada.
A total of 87,200 workers were directly employed by Canadian aerospace companies, a 7.6 per cent increase over 2010, the lobby group said in a news release Monday.
More than 19,000 of these employees are engineers and scientific staff, it added.
The association also says that over 60 per cent of member respondents to its annual survey believe there is "considerable room" for the industry to grow in Canada in coming years, with anticipated hiring increases of up to 15 per cent by 2016.
At the same time, members say they are concerned that proposed changes in this year's federal budget to an R&D-related tax credit could have a "significant negative impact on future R&D investment decisions and weaken the aerospace industry's growth."
Exports accounted for $16.4-billion of revenue last year, while domestic sales totalled $6-billion, the group says.
"2011 was a successful year for Canada's aerospace industry," association president and chief executive Jim Quick said in a statement.
"In a highly competitive global market, we must continue to build on these achievements."