Spirit AeroSystems, one of the world’s largest manufacturers of aerostructures, has launched production of fuselage sections for the Airbus A220 at its North Africa site in Morocco.
Spirit’s Morocco facility recently started producing the aft and forward fuselage sections as well as the keel-beams for the Airbus A220 aircraft, the manufacturer announced in a statement.
“The site has developed expertise in manufacturing a range of components for Bombardier business jets and now joins Spirit global sites already delivering on Airbus commercial programs,” the statement continued.
According to Spirit, which is based in the US, the structures are dispatched from Morocco for assembly at Spirit’s Belfast facility in Northern Ireland.
Congratulations to @SpiritAero Casablanca on the official production launch of #A220 fuselage sections and keel-beams. Casablanca is excited to join our global sites already delivering on key @Airbus programmes: https://t.co/xo4QtVDYZT pic.twitter.com/27ChCueGNS— Spirit AeroSystems (@SpiritAero) June 27, 2022
Morocco’s Minister of Industry and Trade, Ryad Mezzour highlighted that Spirit’s facility, which is located in Midparc, Casablanca’s aerospace industrial park and economic Free Zone, began construction in September 2013.
“Since then, the plant, at the cutting edge of technology specializing in the manufacture of aeronautical parts and structures, has established itself as one of the flagships of the aerospace industry in Morocco,” Mezzour said.
More than 300 employees will support Spirit’s programs at the recently extended 250,000 square-foot manufacturing site, the manufacturer added.
“Spirit’s new program, producing high-tech fuselage sections in Africa for the Airbus A220, following the recent extension of its site, further strengthens the Kingdom’s positioning in complex, high value-added processes, as well as the international influence of our national aeronautics ecosystem,” Mezzour added.
“An ambitious roadmap”
In 2017, Morocco’s aerospace industry, pertaining to in-country activities involving the development, production, maintenance and support of aircraft and spacecraft, was valued at $1.1 Billion dollars according to an Airbus report titled ‘The Great Enabler’.
“The Kingdom (Morocco) already builds parts for all of Airbus’ commercial aircraft, including the A220,” said Mikail Houari, president for Airbus Africa and Middle East. “This aircraft is the latest addition to our product line and consequently to our industrial footprint in Morocco. With this achievement, A220 parts manufacturing is now well integrated in the Moroccan aerospace ecosystem and can proudly be described as ‘Made in Morocco’.”
Stephen Orr, vice president and general manager, Spirit AeroSystems, Morocco said: “We are developing an ambitious roadmap to accelerate the growth of our Casablanca site, with the support of our Ministry of Industry and Trade and are delighted to extend our manufacturing capability to include this latest programme for Airbus.”