Airbus hikes 20-year plane demand forecast based on growing Asian demand
LONDON (REUTERS) - Airbus raised its long-term jet demand forecast on Tuesday, saying the world would need to double its fleet as cities expand and Asia's increasingly affluent middle class takes to the skies.
The European planemaker said airlines, lessors and cargo operators would need a total of 29,226 new passenger and freighter jets worth US$4.4 trillion (S$5.5 trillion) over the next 20 years.
Its latest forecast includes 28,355 passenger jets, up 3.7 per cent from its previous estimate a year ago, and 871 freighters, up 1.6 per cent.
The world's second largest planemaker behind rival Boeing insisted urban population growth would help drive demand for its flagship A380 superjumbo, but acknowledged that recently weak sales had left a "couple" of open slots in 2015 production.