LONDON – European planemaker Airbus will announce a big new order on Thursday that will safeguard around 9,000 jobs in Britain, a government spokesman said.
Separately, there were reports that Malaysian group AirAsia , Asia's largest low-cost carrier, was set to order 100 A320 aircraft worth around $9 billion.
AirAsia chief executive Tony Fernandes, also owner of struggling London soccer club Queen's Park Rangers, tweeted earlier this week he was on his way to London for a "big announcement".
In September, Fernandes said a plan to buy 100 Airbus planes would be submitted to AirAsia's board as part its expansion.
The deal will protect 1,500 Airbus jobs in Britain and a further 7,500 in the extended supply chain, the government spokesman said.
Prime Minister David Cameron, head of a government struggling with unpopular austerity measures and a weak economy, will visit Airbus's Broughton site in north Wales where it assembles aircraft wings and employs over 5,000 people.
(Reporting By Isla Binnie; Writing by Rosalba O'Brien; Editing by Dan Lalor)