Boeing Says European Carriers Will Need 8,700 New Airplanes Through 2040

Boeing expects Europe’s commercial aviation fleet to need 8,705 new airplanes through 2040 to cater to the growing leisure travel market in the region and fleet replacements with more fuel-efficient models, according to the Boeing’s 2021 Commercial Market Outlook (CMO), an annual forecast of long-term demand for commercial airplanes and services. This requirement is valued at 1.25 trillion euros or 1.1 trillion British pounds.

The total demand is expected to be for 7,100 single-aisle airplanes to meet the continued growth in the low-cost carrier segment, which now accounts for more than 50 percent of intra-Europe capacity. Further, there will be demand for 1,545 new widebodies, including passenger and freighter models, to serve long-haul networks.

The aircraft maker anticipates steady growth and greater sustainability for Europe’s commercial aviation fleet over the next 20 years as health and travel restrictions ease, followed by long-haul travel’s return to pre-pandemic levels by 2023 to 2024.

Passenger traffic is projected to grow by 3.1 percent annually, with fleet growth of 2.7 percent, through 2040. The global freighter fleet is expected to grow by 70 percent in the 20-year forecast period, including demand for 85 new freighters in Europe.

The European region is also estimated to require more than 405,000 new aviation personnel by 2040, including pilots, technicians and cabin crews, to support the growth in the region.

As reducing aviation’s carbon footprint remains a top priority for Boeing and for carriers in the European market, the CMO forecasts 90 percent of Europe’s current fleet to be replaced with more fuel-efficient models, outpacing the global replacement share of 80 percent.

The CMO also projects European airlines to further invest in new, higher-capacity single-aisle models that reduce fuel use and emissions for their short-haul routes. Meanwhile, they will use new-generation widebodies, such as the 787 and 777X, for long-haul fleets to replace older, less efficient aircraft with more versatile twin-engine models that reduce fuel use, CO2 emissions and noise.

Boeing said it will be focused on a multi-faceted approach to decarbonising aviation by designing and delivering more fuel-efficient airplanes as well as actively enabling the industry’s transition to renewable energies with a focus on sustainable aviation fuels and advanced technologies.

Meanwhile, the total global commercial fleet is expected to return to its growth trend, generating demand for more than 43,500 new airplanes over the next 20 years, with the global commercial fleet surpassing 49,000 airplanes by 2040, according to the 2021 CMO.

China, Europe, North America and other Asia-Pacific countries each will account for about 20 percent of new airplane deliveries, with the remaining 20 percent going to other emerging markets. Global passenger traffic is projected to grow by 4.0 percent annually, with fleet growth of 3.1 percent, through 2040.

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