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400 new jobs are ready for take-off; Details to be revealed at major aerospace event.

Byline: DAVID JONES

FOUR hundred jobs in two major investment projects in the aerospace sector in Wales are to be announced by Assembly Economic Development and Transport Minister Andrew Davies today.

The news will be confirmed at the largest aerospace event of its kind. More than 1,100 key industry delegates from around the world will visit the two day Maintenance,Repair & Overhaul Europe event in Cardiff today and tomorrow.

The focus will be on aircraft maintenance issues with the conference primarily geared towards assisting the commercial aviation market improve aircraft reliability and safety.

The Welsh Assembly and Welsh Development Agency have worked for four years to bring the event to Wales.

The aerospace industry in Wales employs more than 20,000 people in the manufacture, supply, maintenance, repair and overhaul of aircraft, including Deeside-based Airbus.

Mr Davies, who will open the event, said it was appropriate the conference was being held in Wales as this year alone more than pounds 750m is being invested in the sector in Wales, including pounds 500m at Airbus UK's Broughton site.

``Wales already has 10pc of the UK aerospace industry and we are home to six of the world's top 20 aerospace companies including Airbus, BAE systems, General Dynamics, General Electric,Raytheon and Thales,'' saidMr Davies.

``Our role in maintenance, repair and overhaul is even more significant with close to 40pc of the UK market.''

WDA chief executive Graham Hawker said: ``Our main objectives are to stimulate new business opportunities, to position Wales as a centre of aerospace excellence and to inform key decision makers of the strategic opportunities that Wales has to offer.''

MRO Europe is held annually and stands alongside other events in North America in the spring and Asia Pacific in the winter.
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Title Annotation:Business
Publication:Daily Post (Liverpool, England)
Date:Sep 17, 2003
Words:293
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