Workers at one of Preston’s biggest employers will be cheered by a major new deal.Advertisement
BAE Systems and the government of Qatar have agreed a deal for the supply of 24 Typhoon aircraft.
The £5billion contract is expected to support thousands of jobs – especially at the Warton site – into the next decade.
Chief executive of BAE Systems Charles Woodburn said: “We are delighted to begin a new chapter in the development of a long-term relationship with the State of Qatar and the Qatar Armed Forces, and we look forward to working alongside our customer as they continue to develop their military capability.”
A financing condition is still to be agreed on the contract and a first payment is due for the planes by mid-2018.
Read more: New plane lands at entrance of BAE Samlesbury
The Typhoons are expected to be built by late 2022.
The British government’s defence secretary Gavin Williamson said: “It is a great pleasure to sign our biggest export deal for the Typhoon in a decade. These formidable jets will boost the Qatari military’s mission to tackle the challenges we both share in the Middle East, supporting stability in the region and delivering security at home.
“As we proudly fly the flag for our world-leading aerospace sector all over the globe this news is a massive vote of confidence, supporting thousands of British jobs and injecting billions into our economy.”
In October it was announced 750 roles would be made redundant at the Warton and Samlesbury sites.
A spokesman for BAE said: “Consultations are continuing with the Trade Union and Employee Representatives across all the locations affected. The focus remains on exploring all practical mitigation opportunities in order to minimise the potential job losses.”
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