Rolls-Royce is considering a transfer of engine certification processes to Germany to guarantee that powerplants can be approved under European regulations post Brexit.

"We have to consider what contingency measures we may need to take to ensure our operations in the UK and elsewhere can continue [after Brexit]," the engine manufacturer says.

It adds: "These may in the future include the transfer of the design approval for our large jet engines from the UK to Germany."

Prime Minister Theresa May indicated in March that the UK could seek associate membership of the European Aviation Safety Agency in future. But with the country to leave the EU in March 2019, there is still no definite plan for UK aviation regulation after that date.

Without a succession agreement in place, the UK would no longer be covered by EASA regulations.

R-R says it is in "regular dialogue" with the UK government "to ensure there is no interruption in our service to customers as a result of Brexit".

The manufacturer already handles certification for business jet engines from Germany, as the powerplants are assembled at Rolls-Royce's Dahlewitz site near Berlin.

That facility also builds Trent XWB engines for the Airbus A350, in addition to R-R's assembly line at its Derby headquarters.

Transferring certification of large engines to Germany would be a "technical measure", and the company says: "We do not anticipate such a move would lead to the transfer of any jobs from the UK."

The move is one of several options being considered as potential post-Brexit contingency plans. R-R insists "no final decision" has been taken on whether to "activate this precautionary measure".