While 730 airplanes (31%) will replace current fleet assets, 69% of the demand is expected to be driven by rapid growth of air travel in the region.
According to Boeing Current Market Outlook (CMO), long-range, twin-aisle airplanes – such as the Boeing 777 and 787 Dreamliner – will dominate the Middle East’s order books, reflecting global network priorities. Significantly, airlines in the Middle East currently have a backlog of 882 airplanes, 62% of which are long-haul, twin-aisle and large aircraft.
“The Middle East has consistently outperformed the global aviation market over the past few years, achieving traffic growth well above world average,” said Randy Tinseth, vice president of marketing at Boeing Commercial Airplanes.
“As major Middle East carriers continue their global expansion plans, we are seeing demand for new, efficient, long-haul aircraft, capable of connecting their hubs with any city in the world. With a backlog of almost 174,000 long-haul seats, the region’s carriers have significantly more long-haul capacity than airlines in other regions such as Europe and Asia,” he added.
According to the Boeing forecast, twin-aisle aircraft, such as the Boeing 777 and 787 will account for 46% of the region’s new airplane deliveries over the 20-year period – as compared to 23% globally. Single-aisle airplanes, such as the Boeing 737, will account for 45% of regional deliveries through to 2031, while large airplanes such as the Boeing 747 will account for 8% of forecasted demand. Regional jets are expected to account for the remaining 1% of the demand.
Globally, Boeing has forecast a long-term demand for 34,000 new airplanes, valued at US$4.5 trillion. These new airplanes will replace older, less efficient airplanes, benefiting airlines and passengers and stimulating growth in emerging markets and innovation in airline business models. To meet the growing demand for new airplanes, Boeing has increased production of its popular 737, 777 and 787 airplane families. As of October 2012, Boeing had a backlog of 4,234 airplanes, of which, 337 have been ordered by customers in the Middle East.