Airbus Breaks Ground on First-Ever U.S. Jet-Building Plant

by Christopher Freeburn | April 9, 2013 9:10 am

airport[1]On Monday, Alabama took its first concrete steps toward becoming and airplane manufacturing center[2].

In a ceremony attended by the state officials and executives from European aircraft giant Airbus, the company broke ground on its new $600 million production plant in Mobile. Airbus, a subsidiary of European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company (EADS), hopes to start assembling A320 planes at the facility in two years, the Associated Press notes.

Safran Engineering Services, a major Airbus partner, has also opened new offices in Alabama.

For Airbus, the new plant adds to its production facilities in Europe and Asia, making the company a global manufacturer. It also marks Airbus’ first facility on the home territory of its worldwide aircraft rival Boeing (NYSE:BA[3]).

Company officials said they expected that the presence of U.S.-based manufacturing would help them sell more planes to U.S. airlines.

Airbus announced its decision to build the Mobile facility last year[4]. The plant is expected to employ up to 1,000 workers when it is finished.

Shares of Boeing rose slightly in pre-market trading on Tuesday.

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