February 28, 2024

Airbus Raises Its Forecast for Aircraft Demand

The European plane maker predicted that airlines would buy 27,800 new jets by 2030. That represented an increase of 7 percent from its previous forecast of 26,000 planes, which was made last December, before a wave of orders this year for new Airbus jets from Asian carriers.

Airbus, based in Toulouse, France, said that the new orders would be worth $3.5 trillion, up 9.4 percent from the $3.2 trillion forecast nine months ago.

Still, Airbus’s forecasts remained below those of its main rival, Boeing, which has been slightly more optimistic on the rate of passenger growth for several years running. In June, Boeing predicted sales of 33,500 new jets through 2030 worth $4 trillion.

Airbus said it expected passenger traffic globally to grow at an annual rate of 4.8 percent over the next two decades, just below the roughly 5 percent average rate of the past 30 years. Boeing’s most recent forecast predicted a growth rate of 5.3 percent.

According to Airbus’s forecast, more than one-third of the demand for new planes will come from the Asia-Pacific region, particularly from India and China, where domestic air passenger traffic is expected to grow at an average annual pace of 9.8 percent and 7.2 percent, respectively, over the next two decades.

This year, Airbus received several major orders from Asia for its single-aisle jets, including a record-breaking $18 billion deal for 200 planes from AirAsia, the Malaysian low-cost airline, and two large deals with Indian carriers: a $16.6 billion sale of 150 planes to GoAir and a further 180-plane order from IndiGo, worth $16 billion.

Even in the highly developed air travel markets of the United States and Europe, where economic growth has recently stalled, Airbus predicted robust traffic growth over the long term, propelled largely by budget carriers. Domestic air travel demand in North America was likely to grow at a strong clip of 11 percent a year, Airbus said, while within western Europe, traffic was expected to increase by 7.5 percent annually.

“The aviation sector is an essential element for today’s global economy which is why more people than ever need and want to fly,” John Leahy, Airbus’s chief salesman, said in a statement.

The vast majority of new jet sales were expected to be in the single-aisle category of planes like the Boeing 737 and the Airbus A320, which normally seat around 150 passengers. Airbus predicted that nearly 70 percent of sales over the next 20 years — 19,200 aircraft worth $1.4 billion by 2030 — would be of this type. Forty percent of those planes would be used to replace aging, less fuel-efficient aircraft, Airbus said, while half of new single-aisle deliveries were likely to go to airlines in North America and Europe.

The single-aisle segment is the most hotly contested for both Boeing and Airbus, which each claim about half of the market. But the two companies are expected to begin to face competition at the beginning of the next decade when other manufacturers — including Bombardier of Canada and Embraer of Brazil — are forecast to start deliveries of jets that can seat similar numbers of passengers.

Article source: http://feeds.nytimes.com/click.phdo?i=8659bd4fe2be4fe898c8f42687792609

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