Rolls-Royce secures 7,000 jobs as firm looks to double airplane engine production

  • £1.5 million to be spent on a new test facility in England
  • Rolls-Royce claims move will safeguard 7,000 jobs
  • Engine maker seeking to double production for Airbus, Boeing

An employee fits the nose cone to a Trent 700 aircraft engine on the production line at the Rolls-Royce Holdings Plc factory in Derby, U.K.,
Chris Ratcliffe | Bloomberg | Getty Images

The aerospace engine maker, Rolls-Royce, said Thursday it has saved 7,000 jobs following a decision to upgrade testing facilities at its plant in Derby.

The U.K. firm is to spend £150 million ($192.8 million) on new and existing facilities as it looks to double its engine production and delivery.

"We are doubling the production of new engines at the same time as introducing three new engines to the market.

"With this investment, we are creating the capacity and flexibility to deliver on our goals, while committing to sustain employment in the U.K. and I would like to thank the unions for their support in delivering this important package of investment," said Eric Schulz, Rolls-Royce President of Civil Aerospace in a statement.

Rolls-Royce said the investment in Derby would help to sustain more than 7,000 company jobs in the region.

Unite Union negotiator Simon Hemmings described it as a good news story for both staff and Rolls-Royce.

"The agreement we've reached shows how companies and trade unions can work together differently to deliver the investment and productivity improvements needed to secure the success of a business for the next generation," said Hemmings.

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The new test facility will be used on the Trent XWB, which powers the Airbus A350 XWB, and is the world's fastest selling civil large engine, with more than 1,600 currently on the manufacturer's order books.

Other engines under construction include the Trent XWB-97, which will power the Airbus A350-1000; the Trent 1000 TEN, which will be fixed to all variants of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner family; and the Trent 7000 which will power the Airbus A330neo.