Recent Release | 29 Mar 2022

The impact of Airbus on the UK economy

Economic Consulting Team

Oxford Economics


Airbus supported a £5.6 billion contribution to UK GDP, supported 86,400 jobs across the country, and raised more than £1.4 billion in tax revenues in 2020, according to research by Oxford Economics.

Our new report, commissioned by Airbus, highlights that despite the well-documented impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the global aviation sector, Airbus continues to be a significant contributor to the UK’s economy. When looking at Airbus’ contribution from the start of 2019 to the end of 2020, it found that, in terms of GDP, employment, tax, and investment, Airbus continues to play a crucial role in the UK’s wider economic performance.

The report takes stock of the company’s economic, social, and environmental impact in 2019 and 2020. It quantifies Airbus’ full economic footprint in the UK in terms of its gross value-added contribution to GDP, the level of employment it supports across the country, tax revenues, and investment. In addition, it analyses how the company contributes to broader national initiatives such as the Levelling Up plan, meeting the Net Zero target, and promoting social value activities.

The UK is one of Airbus’ four home markets, alongside France, Germany, and Spain and its UK workforce is part of a global family of 125,000 employees around the world. Operating from more than 25 sites across the UK, Airbus is the largest civil aerospace company in the country, the biggest civilian aerospace exporter, Britain’s largest space company, the biggest supplier of large aircraft to the Royal Air Force, and is responsible for around 50% of the UK’s civil helicopter fleet.

About the team

Our economic consulting team are world leaders in quantitative economic analysis, working with clients around the globe and across sectors to build models, forecast markets and evaluate interventions using state-of-the art techniques. Lead consultants on this project were:

James Bedford

Senior Economist

+44 (0) 203 910 8133

James Bedford

Senior Economist

London, United Kingdom

James is an Economist working within the consultancy division of Oxford Economics.

James first joined Oxford Economics in July 2016 as part of his industrial training scheme, when he spent the year assisting the economic impact team with a wide range of projects. Following his industrial placement, James returned to Newcastle University to complete his BSc in Economics. For his dissertation, James was awarded the European Award for Aviation Economics by the German Aviation Research Society. He has re-joined the consultancy division working primarily with economic impact studies.

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