It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.
Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.
Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.
A £20 billion fighter jet contract which would safeguard thousands of jobs in Lancashire has been signed, according to reports.
The deal to sell 72 Eurofighter Typhoon aircraft to Saudi Arabia has been agreed with the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD), although a formal announcement is not expected to be made, according to The Observer newspaper on Sunday.
It said that plans for the contract, which would see 24 of the jets built at BAE Systems' base in Warton, near Preston with the rest built in the Middle East kingdom, to be signed by King Abdullah on his visit to the UK in October have been dropped.
Reports suggest that fears of a resurfacing of corruption allegations surrounding the deal, which led to a long-running investigation by the Serious Fraud Office that was controversially ended in December, are behind the decision not to formally announce the signing.
The deal would be a massive boost for BAE's 10,000-strong workforce at its bases in Warton and Samlesbury, near Preston in Lancashire, where more than 4,600 people are directly employed on the Typhoon project.
It is believed the agreement is worth £5 billion to supply the jets, a further £5 billion on weapons systems and a potential extra £10 billion from maintenance and upgrades.
A spokesman for BAE and the MoD was unavailable.