Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engines worth $450m are to power 12 Airbus A350XWB aircraft ordered by Ethiopian Airlines.

The Trent XWB is an optimised, single engine type for the Airbus A350 XWB family of aircraft that supplies up to 93,000lb of thrust and has 28% higher fuel efficiencies than the pre-Trent generations.

Ethiopian Airlines chief executive officer Girma Wake said that as one of Africa’s leading airlines, they constantly seek to improve their range and frequency of international services to meet growing passenger demand.

“Our selection of low fuel burn Trent technology will enable us to do this in the most cost-effective way,” he said.

The A350XWBs are expected to enter into service in 2017.