Report highlights nationwide boost from Tempest programme

The UK’s Tempest Future Combat Air System programme is set to deliver around £26bn to the economy and support thousands of jobs, a new report has found.

Tempest programme
Tempest Future Combat Aircraft (Image: BAE Systems)

The report from PwC has found that Tempest will likely support an average of 21,000 jobs a year, with 70 per cent of the programme’s value generated in the North West, South West and East of England. Productivity per worker is predicted to be 78 per cent higher than the national average.

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Team Tempest – the Ministry of Defence (MoD), BAE Systems, Leonardo UK, MBDA UK and Rolls-Royce – is leading the effort alongside international partners to develop the high tech, next generation RAF combat aircraft more rapidly and cost effectively than previous programmes.

Diane Shaw, EMEA Aerospace, Defence and Security consulting leader, PwC, said: “As our research outlines, the scale of the Tempest programme is significant and expected to deliver wide-ranging benefits to the UK, stimulating investment in new technologies and promoting critical skills and capabilities that ensure the UK can continue to operate at the forefront of world-leading technology. The programme will stimulate R&D in regions most in need and generate wider economic benefits for these areas.”

Between now and 2050, Tempest is estimated to contribute £26.2bn to the UK economy and support an average of 21,000 jobs per year from development to service. The expected productivity boost will see an average GVA per worker of £101,000, which is 78 per cent higher than the national average and 42 per cent higher than the country’s manufacturing average. Further benefits are expected to be felt across regional economies.

Tempest’s Regional breakdown

North West

  • The programme is expected to generate at least £7.9bn GVA
  • Will support on average 5,000 highly skilled jobs per year directly employed on the programme and in the first tier of the supply chain
  • Productivity 31 per cent higher than the North West manufacturing average

South West

  • The programme is expected to generate at least £2.7bn GVA
  • Will support on average 2,000 highly skilled jobs per year directly employed on the programme and in the first tier of the supply chain
  • Productivity 24 per cent higher than the South West manufacturing average

East of England

  • The programme is expected to generate at least £1bn GVA
  • Will support on average 750 jobs highly skilled jobs per year directly employed on the programme and in the first tier of the supply chain
  • Productivity 60 per cent higher than the East of England manufacturing average

Source: PwC

“The Tempest programme will bring tens of thousands of skilled jobs that will provide rewarding careers, help to level up the UK economy, and build the advanced capabilities of our world-leading combat air industry,” said ADS chief executive, Kevin Craven. “The contribution of SMEs will be vital to Tempest’s success and I hope our network of innovative supply chain companies will explore the opportunities to be involved in the programme and maximise the benefits to our sector and our national prosperity.”

There are currently over 2,000 people employed across UK industry and the MoD on the programme. Combat Air activities of Team Tempest’s four core industrial partners are expected to contribute £100.1bn to the UK economy and support 62,000 jobs per year between 2021 and 2050.