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Airbus Forecasts Commercial Aircraft Services Market Double in Value by 2041

JetBlue’s Airspace by Airbus main cabin interior on its Airbus A321LR aircraft, featuring wider seats, more legroom and features tailored to the traveler (Photo: Business Wire)

Airbus believes the market for civil aviation-related services will return to pre-pandemic levels in 2023, before doubling in value over the next 20 years.

Airbus is the world’s leading civil aircraft manufacturer as of 2019 by the number of aircraft deliveries, recently concluded summer 2022 season, with 479 aircraft orders so far. The largest number of orders came from the Chinese market, with nearly 300 orders from the country’s three largest carriers; Air China, China Southern, and China Eastern. The manufacturer managed to deliver 145 aircraft in the summer period.

According to the latest Global Services Forecast (GSF) dated Oct. 6, 2022, Airbus expects to grow from the current $95 billion to more than $230 billion in 2041. As a result, the number of people working in aviation services, which keep the world’s fleets in the air, will have to increase by another two million to compensate for the increase in demand. As Airbus itself states, “It takes millions of people to keep you flying.”

In 2022 alone, more than 11 million skilled people worked to keep more than 23,500 planes flying (passenger planes with more than 100 seats and cargo planes with a payload of more than 10 tons).

The GSF report states that passengers have shown in 2022, after two years of restrictions due to the pandemic, that they really want to fly again and return to pre-COVID levels. There was and there is an urgent need for services related to civil aviation, to meet the demand of the 3.3 billion passengers expected until the end of 2022, an increase of 43 percent over the number of travelers in 2021.

According to the report, there were 22,880 aircraft in service at the beginning of 2020, of which 33% will remain in service (including 2020 and 2021 deliveries), while 67% will be replaced.

Nearly 40,000 new deliveries are planned for the period 2022-2041. In 2041, it is expected that more than 95% of passenger aircraft will be a new generation (such as the Airbus A220, A320neo and the A350), with lower carbon emissions and less noise. In addition, fleet renewal enables the introduction of alternative fuels (SAFs), and further engage in decarbonization innovation. Asia-Pacific (with India) will become the largest market for services by 2041

An annual growth rate of 3.7 percent will lead to a doubling of the value of the service market over the next two decades, with a demand for highly skilled labor of about 600,000 new pilots, 640,000 new technicians, and nearly 900,000 new cabin crews.

Aircraft operators are focusing more on their core business, and services to improve aircraft availability and efficiency. As such, these services will be increasingly outsourced, increasing the market for suppliers. These services will be driven by the goals of sustainability and digitization, connectivity and innovation.

Vincenzo Claudio Piscopo
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  • Vincenzo Claudio Piscopo

    Vincenzo graduated in 2019 in Mechanical Engineering with an aeronautical curriculum, focusing his thesis on Human Factors in aircraft maintenance. In 2022 he pursued his master's degree in Aerospace Engineering at the University of Palermo, Italy. He combines his journalistic activities with his work as a Reliability Engineer at Zetalab.

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