Airbus has secured a $506 million contract from the U.K.’s defense ministry to provide in-service support for the Atlas A400M airlifters of the British air force.
The ministry said Thursday the contract covers maintenance, upgrade and repair services for the country’s Atlas fleet through 2026.
Julian Young, chief of air materiel at the U.K.’s defense equipment and support organization, said A400M aircraft will serve as the “backbone” of the British air force’s strategic and tactical air transport capacity through the next decade and beyond.
The program will also sustain approximately 200 jobs within Airbus’ defense and space business as well as 200 jobs at aircraft technology suppliers Messier Dowty, Thales and Rolls Royce, the ministry added.
The U.K. has received 14 of 22 Atlas planes that are scheduled to enter service by 2019.
Airbus also signed a separate two-year, $78 million contract with France and Spain for common support and spares for the countries’ A400Ms.