At the core of the defense-security continuum, reflecting the duality of the stakes and expertise of its industrial partners, GICAT has gradually extended the scope of its activities to include security, while maintaining its historic skills in the field of defense.
The defense industry, a leading economic sector for France
With a turnover of 18 billion euros, the defense industry is France’s third industrial sector. BITD (the defense industry and technology sector) counts around ten corporations and almost 4,000 SMEs/mid-market companies. It currently represents 165,000 jobs, 20,000 of which are highly qualified and, by nature, difficult to relocate. BITD, present throughout the national territory, is a major economic player in many French regions (Rhône-Alpes, Midi-Pyrénées, Centre, etc.).
The land and air-land defense sector represents almost 40,000 direct and indirect jobs. It is one of the few industrial sectors with a high level of production in France, where it contributes to the development of the most advanced technologies, creates most of its added value and makes around 90% of its purchases, thus representing a major source of tax income. Each year, the defense sector hires 5,000 graduates and proposes 4,500 apprenticeship contracts.
Export, the lever of development of the defense industry
With 8.2 billion euros in 2014, French defense industry orders increased by almost 18% compared with 2013 (6.9 billion euros). France thus maintains its position as fourth exporter on the world armament market.
Faced with falling national defense orders, export has become the industry’s main lever of growth, currently representing almost 45% of BITD turnover.
Armament export is an economic asset for France, enabling:
- Reduction of the State deficit, by making a positive, net contribution to our national trade balance (from 5% to 8% between 2008 and 2013)
- Restoration of equilibrium in the defense budget
- Improvement of the coverage ratio of exported goods with 316% (behind electricity and gas)
- Creation of employment, with around 14,000 direct jobs and 13,500 indirect jobs
- Encouragement of R&D development for the benefit of the armies
- Reduction of the holding cost of equipment in the French armies
Security, a growing market
The world security market is currently estimated at approximately 107 billion euros. Among other aspects, it includes infrastructure security, estimated at 25 billion euros, and border security, representing another 13 billion euros. Every year, the security market grows by 7% to meet the State’s security needs. In France, the security market is estimated at 6 billion euros and represents approximately 35,000 jobs.
The security sector, and particularly its industrial component, has been developing strongly since 2000. In France, security providers generate turnover (France and export) of around 21 billion euros (“physical” products, “electronics and systems”, cybersecurity products and services). The industrial part (excluding installation and distribution) represents 16.5 billion euros, with overall average annual growth of 5%.
More than 1,100 companies operate in the security industry in France. This industry comprises both large corporations, holding leading positions on the international market, and a fabric of mid-market companies and SMEs, reputed for their dynamism and innovation capacities.
The trade and industrial sector is based on a network of companies, ranging from major international corporations to innovative, export-driven SMEs, representing 125,000 jobs. Security industry exports represent around 50%.
GICAT, at the center of the sector
The large technological offer proposed by its members (mobility, personal protection, communication, robotics, NRBC, etc.) has naturally led GICAT, as a professional group, to develop its actions in the field of land and air-land security, taking into account the specifics of the sector (employment doctrines, budgets, short acquisition life cycle, etc.).
For the past three years, GICAT has been extending its activities to include the security sector. In 2011, its statutes were modified to include security in the “group of French industries involved in land and air-land defense and security”. Today, approximately 60% of GICAT members, ranging from large corporations to small businesses, are involved in security, representing around a hundred subscribers.
GICAT participates in the structural organization of the security industry, in collaboration with CICS (trust and security industry council) and COFIS (security industry committee).