Defense spending boost from Lockheed Martin’s $400 billion F-35 stealth fighter project spills into Arkansas

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

As Lockheed Martin ramps up next generation production of its $406 billion F-35 fighter jet program, Arkansas is benefitting from offshoot contract work that is filtering into the state from the mammoth industrial project that is supporting jobs in 46 states, company officials told Talk Business & Politics Tuesday (Aug. 7).

Just two weeks ago, after the Trump administration highlighted stronger defense spending by showcasing a full-scale F-35 model on the White House lawn, Lockheed Martin officials announced that the company had hired more than 1,800 new employees in support of stealth fighter jet program, meeting a commitment made in January 2017.

“The F-35 is an iconic product that represents the best of U.S. innovation, technology leadership, and advanced manufacturing,” said Marillyn Hewson, the company’s chairman, president and CEO. “The program supports 194,000 direct and indirect jobs nationwide, and as we ramp up production we are creating even more opportunities for American workers. The men and women who participate in the F-35 program take pride in delivering unmatched, fifth-generation capabilities to the U.S. military and our allies around the world.”

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