Despite a difficult global market, aircraft deliveries in the first four months of 2019 have kept pace with the same period last year, with 93 aircraft delivered in April.
This brings the total deliveries for the year to date to 404, just three aircraft behind 2018.
An increase in wide-body planes has compensated for a 3.6% fall in single-aisle aircraft.
These wide-body planes have added greater value to the UK, with deliveries worth up to £8.5bn in the year to date to Britain.
While, the backlog of orders has fallen as customers delay decisions because of global challenges, it remains above 14,000 aircraft for the 17th consecutive month.
Challenges in the global aerospace industry have included trade disputes and political uncertainty, which means the original forecast of nearly 1,800 deliveries in 2019 could be revised in the next few months.
“Global trade has weakened, trade wars are intensifying and fuel prices have risen significantly,” said Alexandre de Juniac, CEO of International Air Transport Association (IATA), during a speech. “We have geopolitical tensions leading to airspace closures in key regions.”
Aerospace by numbers
In the UK, the aerospace sector has grown by 45% since 2010, with an annual turnover of £35.9bn last year. Productivity growth also rose in the same period by 25% in Britain.
This matches the international aviation sector’s growth, which has shown a large increase in aircraft deliveries between 2010 and 2018, from 972 aircraft made a year to 1,618 in the same period.
UK aerospace in 2018 – image courtesy of ADS
Boeing’s 737 Max
The two fatal crashes of Boeing 737 Max jets within five months triggered shock waves across the globe and the aviation industry.
Governments and airlines around the world were quick to ground the jet or ban it from entering their airspace.
Boeing cited a “chain of events” leading to the issue and said that it is, “making progress on the 737 Max software update that will prevent accidents like these from ever happening again.”
The 737 Max is the newest version of the 737, and is described as the world’s “best-selling airliner”.
Boeing has taken nearly 5,000 orders for its various Max models from more than 100 customers worldwide.
Airlines across the globe embraced the plane for its fuel efficiency and utility for short and medium-haul flights.
Demand for modern, fuel efficient aircraft remains at a high, offering UK industry and other countries – perhaps even China – opportunities to expand.
Boeing has been working on a fix to eliminate any concerns over the plane’s safety, but it is likely to remain out of service for several more months.
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