Aviation starts to feel lift
PROJECTIONS put forward by aircraft manufacturer Boeing paint an optimistic picture for the heavily COVID-impacted airline sector, predicting a stronger demand over the next 10 years than was forecast pre-pandemic.
Boeing’s latest Commercial Market Outlook suggests the aerospace products sector will be worth US$9 trillion over the next decade, up from the US$8.7 trillion it predicted before COVID struck, and the $8.5 trillion flagged only a year ago.
The faster-than-anticipated recovery is being fuelled predominantly by an uptick in demand for domestic air travel, the report noted, with intra-regional markets expected to follow as health and travel restrictions ease.
These rebound factors are tipped to precede a long-haul travel return to pre-pandemic levels by 2023 or 2024.
“As our industry recovers and continues to adapt to meet new global needs, we remain confident in long-term growth for aerospace,” Boeing Chief Strategy Officer Marc Allen said.
“We are encouraged by the fact that scientists have delivered vaccines more rapidly than imaginable and that passengers are demonstrating strong confidence in airplane travel.”
Boeing’s revised forecast also notes that the availability and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines will be “critical factors” in the near-term recovery of passenger air travel, while global aircraft orders are expected to pass 49,000 by 2040, with China, Europe, North America and the Asia-Pacific countries each accounting for about 20% of new plane deliveries.