A Lancashire MP has claimed a proposed merger between defence giant BAE Systems and a European rival could have benefits for the county.
BAE Systems bosses have confirmed talks over a potential merger with Airbus aircraft manufacturer EADS which would create the worlds’s biggest aerospace and defence company.
Fylde MP Mark Menzies who was due to meet BAE Systems bosses, claimed the move could benefit Lancashire workers.
He said: “EADS is a partner with BAE on the Typhoon and with MBDA which is the company that makes the missiles.
“That work is not done in Lancashire, that is produced in the South West.
“But what is very important is for some of the export orders for Typhoon, some clients will have specific requirements and MBDA has the software.
“If that is part of a larger company it is not a bad thing if it helps exports.”
Mr Menzies also claimed the buoyant civil aviation market could have a major boost for Lancashire workers. “There could be a good upside of EADS, the Airbus order book is bursting.
“Defence sales have been an area of difficulty and you contrast that with the civil sector it is not a bad market to be entering.
“This should not be a time for people to be unduly alarmed, it is a time for people to ask questions because there are potential upsides.”
But he vowed to do everything in his power to protect the jobs of the 6,500 BAE Systems employees who work at the Military Air Solutions base at Warton.
John Cameron, trade union convenor for professional staff, said: “We are hoping it will work out to be beneficial in the long-term.
“If it goes ahead it makes them a very large global player.”
But Mr Cameron added the move was still too early to say whether jobs could be lost.