GE said it will launch a turboprop engine production
Washington - AFP
General Electric said Thursday it would create up to 1,000 aviation jobs in Europe, the latest blow to the US jobs market after Congress shut down the Export-Import Bank.
The industrial giant also announced new expansion plans for its aviation business in Brazil and Canada.
GE said it would invest more than $400 million in Europe to launch a turboprop engine production operation under its GE Aviation division that would support the global small aircraft industry and eventually create between 500 and 1,000 jobs.
"With no US export financing available, GE continues pursuit of non-US options to meet customer requirements and support global growth," the Connecticut-based company said in a statement.
GE said the new engine development, test and production operation will combine the expertise in its turboprop facility in the Czech Republic with technologies in its military and commercial jet engines.
The location of the new operations in Europe has not yet been decided, a company spokesman told AFP.
The company said that it was currently bidding on $11 billion of projects that require export financing, and the US Congress's refusal to reauthorize the US Ex-Im Bank on July 1 had forced it to weigh other options.
"The uncertainty around the Ex-Im Bank in the US requires that companies like GE create alternatives in order to compete internationally," said David Joyce, GE Aviation president and chief executive, in the statement.
For the European turboprop engine business, GE said it had secured financing through government-sponsored export credit agencies, without identifying them.
GE Aviation also announced a $55 million investment in Brazil to build a new engine test facility at its Celma location, and expand its engine testing capability at its facility in Winnipeg, Canada, with $23 million in investments.
It was the second time in two days that GE, one of the largest US companies, has announced jobs outside the country, blaming the closure of the Ex-Im Bank.
On Tuesday, GE said it had a financing deal with France's export credit agency COFACE for power projects in a number of international markets, including Indonesia. It said it would move about 500 US jobs overseas, 400 of them to France to work at its gas turbine plant in Belfort.
In addition, 100 GE jobs will be transferred in the move of its final assembly of its aeroderivatives turbines from Texas to Hungary and China.
Shares in Dow member GE were down 1.0 percent at $25.44 in opening trade on the New York Stock Exchange.