In Finland, a viable and competitive domestic defence industry is seen as a fundamental element of credible national defence. Maintaining and developing domestic integration and maintenance capacities, systems capability know-how and crisis repair expertise is considered essential for national defence. A major part of army and air force maintenance has been outsourced to domestic companies, which act as close partners to the Defence Forces.
With a few exceptions, most Finnish defence, aerospace and security companies are privately owned SMEs. Cumulative turnover in 2013 was approximately 1,4 billion Euros out of which ca. 50 % was exports. Direct employment in 2013 was ca. 7000. The defence market in clearly the most important one, since it accounted for ca 64 % of the turnover of the AFDA membership.
International markets and competitions are vital for Finnish companies. Products produced by AFDA member companies are well known all over the world and used by over 30 national armed forces. Assisting member companies in their export activities and networking are amongst AFDA’s priorities.
AFDA is a member in ASD, Aerospace and Defence Industries Association of Europe. AFDA represents the Finnish defence industry in NIAG (NATO Industrial Advisory Group), in EDA and in Nordic Cooperation. AFDA is a part of The Federation of Finnish Technology Industries.