Economic footprint of the A220 program in Québec and Canada
In February 2020, PwC Canada conducted a study on the economic impact of the A220 program in Québec and Canada.
The highlights from this study are described below.
About the program
The Airbus A220 program (originally called the C Series) started in July 2004 when Bombardier launched a feasibility study for a 5-seat abreast aircraft. Bombardier's goal was to fill the gap left between OEMs moving to larger aircraft and regional jets. There was no aircraft specifically designed for the 100- 150 seat segment with lower operating costs and environmental footprint. The C Series program included 2 aircraft: a smaller version (C100) with 110-115 seats and a larger (C130) with 130-135 seats.
Total investment in the program up to July 2018 was $7.5 billion US, of which $1 billion US was invested by the Quebec government. Further economic impact will be created through manufacturing in Mirabel Quebec, currently committed until 2041.
Today, the program employs over 2,700 people at its main site in Mirabel. In addition to its economic impacts, the C Series program provided significant wider benefits by reinforcing technological know-how for the aerospace ecosystem in Quebec, helping to establish it as an aerospace global powerhouse.
Economic footprint of program development
We estimate that the development of the A220 program created a cumulative economic footprint1 in Canada of $6.6 billion2 in GDP, 64,374 job years (e.g. 6,437 jobs lasting ten years), and $4.1 billion in labour income, as shown below. The large majority of this footprint occured in Quebec. Total taxes collected in relation to the program were $1.7 billion, of which $0.7 billion went to the Quebec government and $0.6 billion went to the federal government.
Economic footprint over program development3
The A220 program has been a significant contributor to Bombardier’s R&D investment in aerospace, which has positioned Bombardier as the #1 corporate R&D investor in Canada. R&D provides economic value by driving productivity enhancement and creating and sustaining high value-added jobs.
Economic footprint of ongoing operations
The majority of A220 aircraft are manufactured at a plant in Mirabel, Quebec, whose economic footprint will to continue to grow with production levels expected to more than double in the coming years. The total economic contribution of projected aircraft manufacturing in Canada is estimated at $28.7 billion in GDP, 255,420 job years (i.e. an average of 15,964 jobs over 17 years), and $11.4 billion in labour income, as shown below. The large majority of this footprint would occur in Quebec. Total taxes to be collected in relation to the ongoing operations would be $5.5 billion, of which $2.4 billion will be collected by the Quebec government, $2.0 billion by the federal government.
Total economic footprint 4
The large majority of A220 aircraft are exports, contributing to aircraft being the largest export from Quebec, and the fourth-largest in Canada in 2018. A strong export base sustains diversified economic activity in Canada.
1 We estimated the economic footprint of program development for the period from 2007 to 2018.
2 Dollar values in this report are in 2019 CAD unless otherwise noted.
3 Direct impacts result from business expenditure on suppliers and employees. Indirect (Canadian suppliers) impacts arise from the activities of businesses providing inputs to the A220's suppliers (in other words, its suppliers' suppliers). Induced (consumer spending by employees) impacts result from consumer spending by employees of the businesses stimulated by the direct and indirect expenditures. Total economic impacts are equal to the sum of direct, indirect and induced economic impacts.
4 Airbus and the Government of Quebec have announced a partnership that is planned to last until 2041. However, production forecasts are only available until 2034, so our economic footprint represents 2018 to 2034. Forecasts from 2020 to 2034 were discounted at a 6.0% discount rate, and added to actual results in 2018 and 2019.