The airframe of the A350 XWB will be over 50% composite materials.

The investment, drawn partially from the government’s £750 million Strategic Investment Fund, will enable Airbus in the UK to strengthen its position in wing, landing gear and fuel integration systems technologies and ensure that the UK plays a leading role in the development of the A350 XWB. This support will create and sustain more than 1200 jobs within Airbus across its Filton and Broughton sites in the UK, as well over 5000 jobs within the supply chain across the UK.

Airbus employs 10 500 people in the UK at Filton, near Bristol, and Broughton, North Wales.

The UK aerospace industry is the second largest in the world behind the USA. It employs more than 100 000 people with a turnover of more than £20 billion annually. The UK accounts for over 13% of the total turnover in the world aerospace market.

Aerospace is one the UK's biggest exporting industries and the sector invested £1.8 billion in R&D in 2008.

Source: UK government's Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS).