In its latest Global Market Forecast in September, Airbus predicted that in the next 20 years the world will need to double the size of its aircraft fleet from 17,740 aircraft to 36,560 aircraft, as a consequence of economic growth, and increased air travel by the affluent
middle classes in fast growing markets, such as India and China. Of the new 29,220 passenger and freight aircraft predicted by Airbus to be
required, worth over £2.7 trillion, 10,400 will replace existing jets with more fuel-efficient models, with aircraft sizes increasing to make the best use of limited airport capacity.
With air travel becoming increasingly accessible in all parts of the world, the growth of the travelling middle classes, and increased
urbanisation, tourism and migration in emerging economies, Airbus predicts that by 2032 two thirds of the population in emerging markets will take at least one flight annually.
Airbus is also predicting that by 2032 domestic flights within China will be the world’s largest airline market, outgrowing the US domestic market, and that the wider Asia-Pacific region will account for 34% of the total distance travelled by fare-paying passengers.