Airbus will expand its facilities in Puerto de Santa María, the Bahía de Cádiz Center (CBC), and will produce parts for the A-320, its most commercially successful aircraft, there. Part of this aircraft was already manufactured in the province of Cádiz, in Puerto Real, in a factory that Airbus will stop using for manufacturing in 2024. The CCOO and UGT unions have received information from the company that the expansion of the CBC will allow it to take over the production that Puerto Real loses, while the CBC screws its future with that of the civil division of the aeronautical giant, especially the A-320, its most consolidated product.
The expansion of the CBC refers “initially” to an area of about 4,000 meters that will be used as a canteen, changing rooms, parking, tooling and new production lines.
The unions highlight the commitment expressed by the company for the “consolidation of all the current and future activities of the A320, A330 and A350 commercial division. In this sense, they point out that the highest investment will be made in the A320, modernizing and expanding its production lines and enabling it to be the Spanish plant with the most load of work of the star program of Airbus”.
Currently at the CBC some work is already being done for the A-320. The tail rudders are assembled in Puerto Real, and it is expected that these lines of work will be concentrated in El Puerto de Santa María. The company’s commitment is that the CBC welcomes the activities and jobs of Puerto Real.
In addition, the CBC plant will no longer be exclusively attached to the defense division, to form part of the commercial division that also includes the civil part.
“Airbus confirms that the ownership of the Bahía de Cádiz Center, after its merger with that of Puerto Real, pasará de Airbus Defence and Space a Airbus Commercial Aircraft. Airbus maintains the commitment to guarantee future jobs and workload in the province of Cádiz. Likewise, Airbus confirms the completion of the relevant investment for the modernization and expansion of the facilities, which will allow the CBC to position itself as an Airbus Center of Excellence in Spain and a benchmark for the national aeronautical sector. Both measures will ensure the industrial footprint and the production of civil aeronautics in Cádiz, while maintain defense activities, expanding opportunities to compete for new programs and subsequent workloads”, they have indicated from the company.
The Andalusian Councilor for Economic Transformation, Roger Velasco has described the news as “positive for the workers, for the company and above all for the province of Cadiz. For the Andalusian Government, the priorities are that no work be lost and that the Puerto Real factory be maintained. the company that changed its strategy with respect to Andalusia, because in the first place it was losing weight in civil aviation and, secondly, due to an industrialization of future for the Puerto Real plant. The step taken by the company clears the first of the doubts. The Bahía de Cádiz Center does not abandon its civil activity and maintains other lines related to defence. We continue working to give content to the Puerto Real plant, where the Ministry is committed to its specialization as an industrial research center focused on the development of the use of sustainable fuels”.
Antonio Montoro, of UGT, has pointed out that the future of Puerto Real does not have to be only research, but also industrial.