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U.K. hands Bombardier Rail $2.3 billion job-saving Brexit boost

U.K. hands Bombardier Rail $2.3 billion job-saving Brexit boost
Business
Britain granted Bombardier Inc.’s train unit 1.7 billion pounds ($2.3 billion U.S.) in export funding, bolstering an English plant ahead of a looming merger with France’s Alstom SA.

Bombardier will use the funds to invest in the factory in Derby, England, after winning a contract to build trains for new monorail lines in the Egyptian capital Cairo, according to a statement Wednesday. The loan guarantee will directly support about 100 jobs at the plant, which employs 2,000 people.

Britain is stepping up U.K. Export Finance’s role in promoting global trade links in the wake of Brexit, with the Bombardier commitment a record for the credit agency for an overseas infrastructure project. UKEF also recently backed loans to British Airways and easyJet Plc.

The Egyptian deal will lead to the first export of U.K.-built rolling stock for more than 12 years, providing a boost for the Litchurch Lane site days before the Alstom takeover of Berlin-based Bombardier Transportation.

Derby’s position as a prime manufacturing centre is also at risk amid job cuts at aero-engine maker Rolls-Royce Holdings Plc and question marks over production at Toyota Motor Corp.’s plant there following the split from the European Union.

Alstom’s acquisition of Bombardier Transportation unites two of Europe’s three big trainmakers and could endanger some plants as the coronavirus crisis weakens economies and dents demand for public transport.

It is due to conclude on Jan. 29, according to the French company, which shut down its last U.K. train factory in 2004.
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