Kevin O'Toole/LONDON

THE TURBOPROP market showed few clear signs of recovery in 1994, lending weight to moves for industry consolidation in the run-up to the alliance between ATR and Jetstream; exclusively reported in Flight International, 18-24 January issue.

Overall delivery numbers appear to be largely unchanged at a little below the 240 mark, although official figures have still to come in for some of the manufacturers. The industry's intake of new business edged up, helped by a surge of orders in the 30-seat market, while numbers of cancellations were also generally lower.

Despite some better news on orders, manufacturers report that prices are still under pressure, with one referring to deals being struck at discounts of more than one-third below list prices.

ATR continued to lead on numbers of deliveries, despite a dwindling backlog, which was hit by more cancellations in 1994. On present figures, an alliance with Jetstream would give the merged group a share of over 40% in the 30- to 70-seater market and, arguably, the highest bank of orders.

The moribund 19-seater market continues to be dominated by Beech and Fairchild, with Dornier shipping only six aircraft and Jetstream recording a single delivery and no new business. The two European manufacturers managed to notch up a string of new orders and commitments in the highly competitive 30-seater market, however.

The market for larger turboprops remains depressed, but Saab is optimistic that orders for the 2000 programme will pick up now that deliveries are finally under way. Fokker estimates that over the past four years, the 40- to 70-seat turboprop market has seen a net increase in order books of only 122 aircraft, with its own Fokker 50 accounting for 71 of those.

Source: Flight International