Note we are talking world, not China figures here. But the China effect is what pushes the figures into the stratosphere.
According to Airbus’ latest Global Market Forecast, around 25,000 new passenger and freighter aircraft valued at US$3.1 trillion will be delivered between 2009 and 2028. And in the next twenty years there will be a demand for 3,440 freighters.
Demand will be driven by emerging economies, evolving airline networks, expansion of low-cost carriers and the increasing number of mega-cities, as well as traffic growth and the replacement of older less efficient aircraft with more eco-efficient airliners.
Larger aircraft in all size categories are required to help ease aircraft congestion and accommodate growth on existing routes, and to achieve more with less.
In terms of freighters, airfreight ton kilometers (FTKs) are forecast to increasing by 5.2% per year. Combined with fleet renewal, this creates a demand for around 3,440 freighters. More than 850 of these are new aircraft valued at US$210 billion, with the remainder converted from passenger aircraft.
Eye for Transport reports that Aircraft have increased in size by 3% over the last ten years, and Airbus predicts that, by 2028, the average aircraft will be 26% bigger than today.
The major question is who will build the aircraft? Will part be built in far-flung factories and then assembled? And will China be making its own aircraft totally by the end of the period?
Note, no passenger preferences are involved here. Freight is freight is freight. It comes down to cost and convenience.