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Singapore Turns Colonial Airstrip Into Hub for Jet Engine Makers

  • City is home to Rolls-Royce's most modern factory outside U.K.
  • Push comes as Asia set to be world's biggest aircraft market
A PurePower PW 100 Engine manufactured by Pratt & Whitney, a unit of United Technologies Corp., is displayed at the company's facility at Seletar Aerospace Park in Singapore, on Monday, Feb. 15, 2016.
Photographer: SeongJoon Cho/Bloomberg

Asia’s ascent toward the top of the world’s aerospace market is being powered by a former colonial airbase in northern Singapore.

Once known for making mosquito coils and hair wigs, Singapore is now a hub for manufacturing the massive engines propelling Airbus Group SE’s superjumbo A380 and Boeing Co.’s Dreamliner. Those efforts are centered across the water from Malaysia at the Seletar Aerospace Park, a former mangrove swamp cleared for a British landing strip.