Boeing Projects $770 Billion Market for New Airplanes in Asia-Pacific

The Boeing Company [NYSE: BA] detailed its Current Market Outlook for the Asia-Pacific region today, forecasting a market for about 7,200 new airplanes worth $770 billion over the next 20 years. Over the forecast period, Asia-Pacific will remain the largest market outside North America for new commercial airplanes.

With the continued high rate of growth for Asia-Pacific air travel and air cargo markets, Asia-Pacific's fleet will nearly triple to about 8,600 airplanes by the end of the forecast period.

Nearly 7,200 new airplanes will be needed for future growth and replacement. Single-aisle airplanes, such as the Next-Generation 737, will be the largest category with total new airplane deliveries at 3,690 airplanes. Intermediate twin-aisles such as the Boeing 787 and 777 will comprise approximately 2,430 airplane deliveries. Regional jets will total 540 units delivered and 747-and-larger-size airplanes will be 510 units delivered.

"Passengers are the foundation of air travel and, in a competitive market, the airlines will continue meeting passengers' demands for more direct nonstop flights to destinations around the world with longer-range, efficient and comfortable airplanes," said Scott Carson, Boeing Commercial Airplanes vice president - Sales. "This requirement will be met by airplanes in the 200-to-400-seat capacity category, with relatively few very-large aircraft being needed."

Between Thailand and Asia-Pacific, the air passenger traffic market is growing significantly. Thai Airways International will need more airplanes to open new European, North American and Australasian markets. The national air carrier is addressing the demand by adding new aircraft to its fleet, including six new Boeing 777-200ERs to be delivered in the fourth quarter of 2006 and continuing into 2007. The 777-200ERs will join THAI's current fleet of 91 airplanes, the majority of which are Boeing 737s, 747s, 777s and MD-11s.

THAI was a launch customer for the Boeing 777 program and has been operating that airplane from the very beginning. The exceptional reliability, economics, and efficiency of the 777-200ER ideally fits the requirements of the airline for its long-haul medium-density routes.

The Boeing 747, 777 and 787 Dreamliner families are the perfect combination for meeting the 200-to-400-seat market requirements. These are the most efficient airplane families, with lower fuel consumption and operating costs along with greater payload capacity.

The newly launched 747-8 Intercontinental offers airlines the right balance of low economic risk and profitability in serving the large-airplane market. It will use the technologies of the 787 Dreamliner to significantly increase the passenger and freighter capabilities of the 747. It will offer greater fuel efficiency and improved operating economics while being friendlier to the environment with reduced noise and emissions.

Thailand is expected to become a major regional air transportation gateway in the Asia-Pacific region with the new multi-billion baht Suvarnabhumi Airport scheduled to begin operation in June.

Boeing projects passenger traffic within Asia-Pacific to grow 6 percent per year, outpacing the world average of 4.8 percent during the next 20 years. This robust air travel growth will cause Asia-Pacific carriers to expand significantly, resulting in the high regional demand during the forecast period.

Worldwide, Boeing projects that operators will invest $2.1 trillion for approximately 25,700 new commercial airplanes during the next 20 years. The full forecast is available here.

For further information:
Linda Lee
Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Seattle
office: +1 (206) 766-2905
mobile: +1 (206) 331-8298
Juraikarn Trakulvech
Ogilvy PR, Bangkok
(66 (2) 205-6611