LONDON (AP) _ Rolls Royce has won a 580 million pound ($930 million) contract to supply jet engines for British Airways' new fleet of Boeing 777 jets, beating back competition from U.S. rivals General Electric Co. and Pratt and Whitney.

British Airways said Sunday the British aero-engineering firm will supply up to 64 of its Trent 895 engines to be fitted to the airline's new twinjet Boeing 777s. British Airways has placed an order for 16 of the new jets and taken an option on another 16.

``The race to win this engine order has been one of the most competitive in our history,'' British Airways' Chief Executive Bob Ayling said in a statement.

The deal is significant in securing jobs at Rolls Royce, which lost out to General Electric of Fairfield, Connecticut, in 1991 when British Airways bought engines for the airline's first fleet of 29 Boeing 777s.

The Trent engines are assembled at Rolls Royce's plant in Derby, in northeast England, from components made at its factories across England that employ more than 25,000 people. Another 8,000 people are employed in some 1,500 other related British companies.