Middle East Key Location for Boeing Business Jets

 - December 8, 2022, 12:08 AM
Highlighting the popularity of VVIP airliners in the Middle East, this Boeing Business Jets BBJ2 on static display is registered to Pasaca Capital, a Pasadena, California-based finance company. (Photo: David McIntosh)

Boeing Business Jets logged four orders and two green and one completed deliveries this year, the company told AIN at MEBAA 2022. “Next year is looking much stronger, though, as we have a number of what we think are good probability campaigns in work,” said Boeing Business Jets director of marketing Alex Fecteau. “We’ve had a total of 15 BBJ Max orders, and delivered eight, with seven in the pipeline to delivery.”

Citing WingX flight data, Fecteau said 34 percent of all BBJ flights arrived or departed in the Middle East between January 2019 and September 2022. WingX’s global business jet moving seven-day average for flights shows global traffic is up 14 percent on 2019 year-to-date, while the Middle East is up 62 percent over the same period.

He called the Middle East a small-market, big-impact arena, playing host to only 2.5 percent of all business jets but with 55 percent of those in the large or bizliner segments. Boeing identifies a total of around 820 business jets in the Middle East and Africa (MENA) region. The Middle East alone accounts for 25 percent of the worldwide bizliner fleet, or 98 aircraft, he said.

Government, VVIP, charter, and corporate operators in the MENA region are home to 29 percent of the BBJ fleet, with a total of 78 aircraft, 69 of them in the Gulf Cooperation Council. The UAE accounts for 30; Saudi Arabia, 29; three each in Bahrain and Qatar; two each in Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, and Morocco; and one each in Egypt, Tunisia, and Turkey. There are 44 head-of-state widebody aircraft in the Middle East, of which Boeing claims 32 BBJ types.

The Middle East is also home to 50 percent of all widebody BBJs and the two largest BBJ operators. There are three BBJs on static this week at the MEBAA Show: privately owned BBJ2, Royal Jet BBJ, and Comlux's BBJ767-200ER SkyLady.