This year's slump in airliner orders continues to inflict serious damage on the Western regional manufacturers' fortunes, with first-half net sales down 60% on the same period in 2008.

ATR, Bombardier and Embraer accumulated just 65 net orders in the first six months of 2009, compared with 160 the year before (Bombardier data is for its fiscal year - 31 January-31 July). The true scale of the sales collapse this year is disguised by the fact that the 2009 figure includes the first 50 launch orders for Bombardier's CSeries small mainline jet. Without that boost, the net total would be just 15 aircraft - and jet sales would be in deficit.

The problem for the manufacturers this year has been twofold. Not only are new orders few and far between, but there is also the issue of order cancellations resulting from airline cutbacks or failures. Embraer fared worse in this regard, having to remove 25 ERJ-145 orders held by China's Hainan Airlines. This drops the backlog for its original regional jet model to just 12 aircraft (all of which will be delivered from the Harbin production line).

ATR secured 28 new orders in the first six months, but nine existing contracts were terminated, dropping its net order total to 19 aircraft. Turboprop sales at rival Bombardier were slightly lower, at 15 net orders.

Overall, deliveries in the first half were down 5% on 2008, falling from 154 aircraft to 147. Within that total, however, jet shipments declined 10% - from 108 to 97 - while turboprop deliveries rose by a similar proportion from 46 to 50.

Although Embraer remains the most prolific producer, its output fell 17% from 81 to 67. This caused its overall share of deliveries to drop from 53% to 46%. Bombardier boosted its delivery share by seven points to 40% after increases in CRJ and Q Series shipments saw its output rise 16% to 59 aircraft. ATR's shipments were essentially flat at 21 aircraft.

The total backlog has fallen by 10% since the end of 2008, to 779 aircraft. Embraer remains the overall market leader with a 44% share, while ATR is the dominant turboprop player, with over 60% of the ATR/Q Series backlog.

regional aircraft orders table

Source: Flight International