On 21 February, Estella hosted the conference “Navarre, the way to the stars”, organized by the Regional Government, with the participation of the astronaut and former Minister of Science and Innovation, Pedro Duque. The meeting served to raise the challenges and potential lines of work that the aerospace sector in Navarre should follow. Challenges such as the creation of a sectorial and business space of its own, or the approach of its companies to industries that can “add value” in terms of Big Data, Artificial Intelligence or electronics (intersectoral cooperation), among others, were raised. This was reflected in the report “The aerospace industry in Navarre”, prepared by the Navarre Industry Association (AIN) presented at the conference itself.
The aerospace sector employs around 400 people in Navarre, most of whom are highly qualified. Moreover, the total turnover of the more than twenty companies in Navarre that have lines of business in this field amounts to around 150 million euros, of which 65 million euros correspond exclusively to the aerospace sector. This sector has grown by 133% in the number of companies over the last fifteen years, and Mikel Irujo, Regional Minister for Economic and Business Development, remarked that “he is convinced that in the next fifteen years we will have a consolidated sector (…) We have the capacity, technology centres and technology”.