PROVIDENCE, R.I. — A report says Rhode Island’s defense industry accounts for almost 30,000 jobs in the state and has generated $4.3 billion in economic output in 2016.

The report released Wednesday by The Southeastern New England Defense Industry Alliance says the state’s defense cluster created more than two billion in income for Rhode Island households last year. The cluster is the highest paying sector in the state.

The report says the jobs supported by the cluster represent 6.2 percent of total employment based in Rhode Island and reflects over 12 percent growth since 2012.

The cluster generated nearly $147 million in tax revenues for state and local governments in 2016.

Democratic Gov. Gina Raimondo says it’s “critical” that the state continues to foster the innovation and growth of the cluster.

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