Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Africa needs to replace ageing fleet – 700 Aircraft

Planemaker Boeing forecast on Tuesday that Africa would need about 700 aircraft worth $80-billion over the next 20 years to deal with increased air traffic as the continent's economy picks up.

The world's poorest continent is enjoying increased air travel and air cargo transport as many of its 53 countries experience rapid economic growth, spurred by global demand for commodities.

"As the demand for African commodities grows and foreign development and tourism increase, African carriers will require a modernized fleet in order to compete on routes historically dominated by foreign carriers," said Mike Warner, a senior market analyst for Boeing Commercial Airplanes.

Warner said in a statement released at an Africa defence aviation conference that Africa's current fleet was on average nearly 20 years old in a market where more fuel-efficient airplanes were called for to help offset high fuel costs, one of the major factors influencing operator profitability.

He said growth in the airline market, along with demand for new more fuel-efficient jets, would drive new airplane deliveries to Africa.

Boeing forecast that twin-aisle planes will account for 32% of new planes delivered to the continent over the next 20 years, compared with 23% globally.

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