European consortium Airbus said it will establish a manufacturing facility in the United States for assembly and delivery of A320 aircrafts. Located at the Brookley Aeroplex in Mobile, Alabama, it will be the company’s first US-based production facility. The Alabama complex will also assemble A319 and A321 aircrafts.
According to Airbus' schedule, the site construction will begin in mid 2013 and it is planned to start production in 2015, with first deliveries from the Mobile facility beginning in 2016. Airbus anticipates the facility will build between 40 and 50 aircraft per year by 2018. In a press release, the company explained the operation is part of its strategy to enhance Airbus’ global competitiveness and meeting the growing needs of its customers in the United States.
“The time is right for Airbus to expand in America,” said Fabrice Brégier, Airbus CEO. “The US is the largest single-aisle aircraft marke
t in the world, with a projected need for 4,600 aircraft over the next 20 years.”
Alabama governor Robert Bentley indicated that this project can generate up to 1,000 jobs. Airbus already has a strong and growing presence in Alabama and throughout the United States. In Alabama, the company operates an Engineering Center, also located at Brookley Aeroplex and employing more than 200 engineers and support staff, as well as an Airbus Military customer services operation supporting US Coast Guard aircraft.
In addition, Airbus operates an Engineering Center in Wichita, Kansas; an aircraft Spares Center in Ashburn, Virginia; a Training Center in Miami, Florida, and a regulatory and government liaison office in Washington, D.C. Subsidiary Metron Aviation, a leading provider of advanced Air Traffic Management products and services, is based in Dulles, Virginia. Airbus’ headquarters for the Americas are located in Herndon, Virginia.
Airbus is the largest export customer for the US aerospace industry. Since 1990, the company has spent $127 billion with US suppliers, $12 billion last year alone.