Summit Notebook

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Pratt and Whitney’s Hess: corporate jets got bad rap


Pratt and Whitney President David Hess says corporate jets got a bad rap from Washington and the rhetoric hurt the industry.

Remember the furor over automakers arriving for congressional hearings late last year in corporate jets to ask for bailouts? And how President Barack Obama and his administration was publicly angry that Citigroup was purchasing a $50 million plane while receiving government funds from the Troubled Assets Relief Program.

Well all of the rhetoric hurt the corporate jet industry, Hess said in an interview at a Reuters Aerospace and Defense Summit. AERO-ARMS-SUMMIT/

“Some of the criticism of the business jet industry was very unfortunate early this year. That’s a great industry that employs hundreds of thousands of people in the U.S.,” Hess said. Companies that make corporate jets have lost jobs and their suppliers have been affected like Pratt and Whitney Canada which is expected to see engine deliveries down about 20 percent this year, he said.