Negative outlook in Boeing forecast

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According to a new aerospace market forecast from Boeing, the commercial aviation and services markets will continue to face significant challenges due to the coronavirus pandemic, while global defence and government services markets remain more stable.

Boeing on 6 October released its annual forecast for the commercial and defence aerospace market, reflecting the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and Boeing’s view of near-, medium- and long-term market dynamics.

“While this year has been unprecedented in terms of its disruption to our industry, we believe that aerospace and defence will overcome these near-term challenges, return to stability and emerge with strength,” said Boeing Chief Strategy Officer Marc Allen.

The 2020 Boeing Market Outlook (BMO) forecasts a total market value of $8.5 trillion over the next decade including demand for aerospace products and services. The forecast is down from $8.7 trillion a year ago due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Airlines globally have begun to recover from a greater than 90% decline in passenger traffic and revenue early this year, but a full recovery will take years, according to the outlook.

The 2020 Boeing Market Outlook includes projected demand for 18 350 commercial airliners in the next decade – 11% lower than the comparable 2019 forecast – valued at about $2.9 trillion. In the longer term, with key industry drivers expected to remain stable, the commercial fleet is forecasted to return to its growth trend, generating demand for more than 43 000 new airplanes in the 20-year forecast time period.

The BMO also projects a $2.6 trillion market opportunity for defence and space during the next decade. This spending projection reflects the ongoing importance of military aircraft, autonomous systems, satellites, spacecraft and other products to national and international defence. This demand continues to be global in nature with 40 percent of expenditures expected to originate outside of the United States.

While near-term commercial services demand is lower, the BMO forecasts a $3 trillion market opportunity for commercial and government services through 2029, with digital solutions emerging as a critical enabler as customers focus on leaner operations to adjust to future market demand. Life cycle services and support will help customers scale their operations to meet efficiency and cost objectives aligned to market recovery trends.

“Commercial aviation is facing historic challenges this year, significantly affecting near- and medium-term demand for airplanes and services,” said Darren Hulst, vice president, Commercial Marketing. “Yet history has also proven air travel to be resilient time and again. The current disruption will inform airline fleet strategies long into the future, as airlines focus on building versatile fleets, networks and business model innovations that deliver the most capability and greatest efficiency at the lowest risk for sustainable growth.”

The commercial forecast includes:

— Over the next 20 years, passenger traffic growth is projected to increase by an average of 4% per year.
— The global commercial fleet is expected to reach 48 400 by 2039, up from 25,900 airliners today. During this period, Asia will continue to expand its share of the world’s fleet, accounting for nearly 40% of the fleet compared to about 30% today.
— Single-aisle airliners such as the 737 MAX will continue to be the largest market segment, with operators projected to need 32 270 new airliners in the next 20 years. Single-aisle demand will recover sooner due to its key role in short-haul routes and domestic markets as well as passenger preference for point-to-point service.
— In the widebody market, Boeing forecasts demand for 7 480 new passenger airliners by 2039. Widebody demand will be affected by a slower recovery in long-haul markets – typical after air-travel shocks – as well as uncertainties from COVID-19’s impact on international travel.
— Air cargo demand, a relative bright spot in 2020, is expected to grow 4% annually and generate further demand for 930 new widebody production freighters and 1 500 converted freighters over the forecast period.

The global airplane fleet will continue to generate demand for aviation services, including parts and supply chain; engineering, modifications and maintenance; training and professional services; and digital solutions and analytics. The served market for commercial services is valued at $1.6 trillion, and $1.4 trillion for government services.



Around the world, the long-term need for commercial pilots, maintenance technicians and cabin crew remains robust. Boeing’s 2020 Pilot and Technician Outlook forecasts that the civil aviation industry will need nearly 2.4 million new aviation personnel between now and 2039.