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A view of Boeing’s facilities at Boeing Field in King County, Washington. (Photo: AirlineGeeks | Katie Bailey)

Boeing Aircraft Parts to Be Manufactured in Mexico

In a recent tweet published this week, Mexico’s Secretary of Foreign Affairs, Marcelo Ebrand, the French company SAFRAN will begin the construction of a new plant in Chihuahua will be manufacturing the interior of Boeing passenger aircraft. This announcement was made after Mexico, the United States of America and Canada signed a new International Treaty on July 1.

SAFRAN, the world’s third-largest aerospace provider, has been operating in Mexico for over 25 years, primarily in the aerospace markets. According to its website, this French company has two production plants in Querétaro, both SAFRAN centers of excellence: one makes critical parts for the CFM56 and SaM146 engines and the other specializes in landing gear components for Airbus and Boeing airplanes.

In addition, SAFRAN operates the largest aircraft wiring plant in the world, in Chihuahua. When it was inaugurated in 1996, the plant was the first aerospace manufacturing plant in Mexico. Today, it comprises four production units and a wiring system design and engineering center. The site designs and produces 95% of the wiring used on the Boeing 787 Dreamliner and produces 75% of the wiring on the Airbus A380, the world’s biggest jetliner.

With extensive operations in the Mexican aerospace market, SAFRAN is a leading partner for the country’s airlines. The CFM56 engine developed and produced by CFM International, the 50/50 joint company between SAFRAN Aircraft Engines and General Electric (GE), powers more than 120 single-aisle commercial jets for Aeromexico and Interjet.

Since 2016, SAFRAN dedicated to composite parts for the LEAP jet engine in Mexico. The LEAP engine – the successor to the CFM56 – has already been chosen to power Aeromexico’s 90-strong fleet of Boeing 737 MAX airliners and the 40 Airbus A320neo airliners ordered by Interjet. SAFRAN also operates in the regional aviation market, as the supplier of the SaM146 engine (through PowerJet, a 50/50 joint company between Safran Aircraft Engines and UEC Saturn) and nacelles for the fleet of 30 Sukhoi Superjet 100 (SSJ100) regional jets ordered by Interjet.

SAFRAN operates three maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) centers in Querétaro. These state-of-the-art facilities provide a complete range of support services for aircraft engines, landing gear and hydraulic systems.

According to Mr. Ebrand, the construction of this new plant will generate 800 jobs, which is positive after the French company laid off 3,000 workers in May due to falling demand from the COVID-19 pandemic. Nonetheless, SAFRAN is Mexico’s largest employer in the aerospace industry, with around 10,000 employees at production, maintenance and engineering.

Editorial note: title amended.

Juan Pedro Sanchez Zamudio
Juan Pedro Sanchez Zamudio
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