Boeing predicts 4.2% annual growth for next 20 years

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Boeing 767 Freighter

Cargo is expected to grow by 4.2 per cent annually in revenue tonne kilometres for the next 20 years, Boeing predicts in its World Air Cargo Forecast.

Speaking at The International Air Cargo Association Air Cargo Forum in Paris on 26 October, vice president – marketing, Randy Tinseth says it will be a few years until the market starts really growing. The biggest trends have been the growth of e-commerce, while freighters will remain important, and the market will continue to change and evolve.

He says: “There have been changes in market during the last 10 years, both for business models or nature of market, we have to prepare for change.”

Despite concerns about overcapacity, he says freighters will remain important, telling delegates: “Dedicated freighters will continue to have an important role, they will still carry more than half of air cargo, we expect it to remain over 50%.”

Tinseth also pointed out that 90 per cent of freighters flying are Boeing aircraft.

Boeing predicts that 930 new freighter will be needed over 20 years worth $270 billion, with 550 being large aircraft and 380 medium sized ones. Half this demand is expected to come from the market growing and the other half from older aircraft such as classic 747s and MD-11s being retired.

Tinseth says e-commerce has been seeing year-on-year growth of 20 per cent, and the market will double in five years. He predicts there will be strong demand for its products including the 737-800 passenger to freighter (P2F) conversion.

“This will drive the package business moving forward. Express delivery will grow 50 per cent year-on-year and will be especially strong in China. Increased demand for the 737-800 P2F is an important driver of the market.”