Boeing Says China To Become First Trillion-dollar Market

 - September 13, 2016, 9:16 AM
Boeing expects the Chinese widebody fleet to triple in size over the next 20 years. (Photo: Flickr: Creative Commons (BY-SA) by InSapphoWeTrust)

Boeing projects a demand for 6,810 new airliners in China over the next 20 years, making it the first trillion-dollar aviation market by the airframer’s reckoning. Boeing released its annual China Current Market Outlook (CMO) on Tuesday in Beijing, estimating the total value of the new airplanes at $1.025 trillion.

“As China transitions to a more consumer-based economy, aviation will play a key role in its economic development,” said Boeing Commercial Airplanes vice president of marketing Randy Tinseth. “Because travel and transportation are key services, we expect to see passenger traffic grow 6.4 percent annually in China over the next 20 years.”

Boeing predicts China will need 5,110 new single-aisle airplanes through 2035, accounting for 75 percent of the total new deliveries. Low-cost carriers and full-service airlines continue to add airplanes and expand new point-to-point services to accommodate both leisure and business travel demand from a rising middle class in China and throughout Asia.

Tinseth said the backlog from Chinese customers demonstrates that Boeing has positioned the new 737 Max 8 and the current Next-Generation 737-800 at the heart of the single-aisle market.

Boeing forecasts the widebody fleet will triple in size, requiring 1,560 new airplanes. This year’s forecast reflects a continued shift from very large airplanes to efficient new small and medium widebody airplanes.

China’s single-aisle fleet currently accounts for about 18 percent of global single-aisle aircraft; however, China’s widebody fleet only represents approximately 5 percent of the global widebody segment.

“The continuing expansion of China’s middle class, coupled with new visa policies and a wide range of widebody airplanes with new technologies, capabilities and efficiencies, gives us every reason to expect a very bright future for China's long-haul market,” concluded Tinseth.

Driven by China’s growing e-commerce business—already the largest in the world—air cargo demand in the country with result in the need for 180 new freighters and 410 converted freighters, according to Boeing.