As Warton-built RAF Typhoons this week were flying over Qatar this week as part of a joint exercise being held with the Emir of Qatar’s Air Force a new report has come out showing BAE Systems’ £11.1bn contribution to the British economy.
Qatari pilots have been testing their combat skills in their Mirage jets against the British pilots flying Typhoon. Qatar is set to get 24 Typhoons to update its fleet.
A report by Oxford Economics based on 2016 figures says that BAE accounts for almost one per cent of all UK exports and 0.6 per cent of the country’s entire economic output.
It is also one of the most productive companies in the UK, with labour productivity levels almost 80 per cent greater than the national average, reflecting its investment in its highly skilled workforce, research and development expenditure and capital investments.
The report also highlights the facts that BAE Systems exports £4.7bn in goods and services, equivalent to 0.9 per cent of UK exports, it spends £4bn on goods and services with some 8,900 suppliers across the UK, and it supports nearly 130,400 full time equivalent jobs in the UK, including some 14,000 jobs in the North West mostly in Lancashire.
However more than 20,000 jobs nationally and more than 700 at Warton and Samlesbury are currently under threat at BAE as the Typhoon production lines slows down.
BAE Systems Chairman, Sir Roger Carr, said: “BAE Systems plays a critical role in ensuring the security and prosperity of the UK and we prioritise investment in skills, capital and technology to support our continued growth in productivity and exports.
“We recognise our responsibility to support wider industry and the positive role we can play in addressing the UK’s productivity challenge.
“We are proud to work with the thousands of UK companies across our supply chain on some of the world’s most complex engineering programmes and together we create skilled jobs, develop new technologies and play our part in driving prosperity in regions across the UK.”
On 17 September 2017 the then Defence Secretary, Sir Michael Fallon, and his Qatari counterpart, Khalid bin Mohammed al Attiyah, signed a Statement of Intent concerning Qatar’s proposed purchase of 24 UK built Typhoon aircraft.
Around ninety engineering support staff from the RAF are supporting the exercise in Qatar.
The Officer leading the British side of the exercise, Squadron Leader Andrew Shaw said his team were very excited about the chance to fly alongside fighter pilots from the air force of
Qatar; “We are delighted to be here to exercise and fly alongside our colleagues from the QEAF.
"We hope to be able to demonstrate the exceptional capabilities of the Typhoons to the Qatari Fighter Wing and for the ground engineers from both Air Forces to learn from each other's experiences.”