Boeing forecasts that Indian airlines will receive 1,450 aircraft valued at $175 billion in the next 20 years, with India to surpass China with the world's highest traffic growth.

In a presentation to Indian journalists, Boeing cited several factors for this strong growth including Indians' high propensity to travel, improved domestic air services and liberalisation.

Between 2012 and 2031, the US airframer predicts annual compound traffic growth (traffic to, from, and within) of 8.4% for South Asia, compared with 7% for China, 6.6% for Latin America and 6.5% for Southeast Asia. Over the same period, it forecasts average world traffic growth of 5%, with Europe having 4.1% growth and North America 2.8%.

Of the 1,450 aircraft Indian carriers will obtain, it foresees Indian carriers buying 1,201 single-aisle jets and 234 twin-aisle jets. The airframer paints a bleak market forecast for regional jets of 15 aircraft, and predicts zero demand for large aircraft. This amounts to $500 million for regional jets, $114 billion for single-aisle jets, and $61 billion for twin-aisle jets.

Air India 787

© Air India

Although it predicts single-aisle aircraft will comprise 83% of deliveries and twin-aisle aircraft 16%, the value of single-aisle aircraft will comprise 65% of the market and twin-aisle aircraft 35%.

Boeing suggests that the ailing Indian airline industry may be on the cusp of a turnaround. It notes that domestic capacity and demand are more balanced, with domestic RPKs rising by 1.7% and ASKs rising by 2% in the first quarter of 2012.

On the international front, both Air India and Kingfisher have made "significant capacity reductions".

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news