Oct. 26, 2012, Chicago, Il. - Boeing has predicted that airlines in North America will take delivery of approximately 7,300 new aircraft by 2031, valued at $820 billion.
In its latest 2012 North America market outlook, the company stated that after taking into account the retirements of ageing aircraft, the fleet of aircraft in the continent will increase from the present 6,650 to about 8,830 by 2031.
Boeing Commercial Airplanes Marketing vice president Randy Tinseth said the North American commercial aviation market was about to achieve a third consecutive year of profit, with modest passenger traffic growth.
"The long-term outlook for the North American airline industry is approximately 3% annual traffic growth through the forecast period," Tinseth said.
The North American market will be defined by the demand of low-cost carriers and the requirement to retire ageing aircraft of established network carriers.
While the network carriers are expected to follow strict capacity discipline, the growth of low-cost carriers is predicted to overtake due to growing demand to cover routes abandoned by the network carriers.
Boeing has forecasted demand for single-aisle aircraft to comprise 69% of the total fleet in the continent over the next two decades.
As a result of rising fuel costs, US airlines have been prompted to accelerate their fleet renewal programmes and were looking for fuel-efficient aeroplanes, Boeing noted.
Recently, several airlines such as Alaska, American, Delta, Southwest and United have announced plans to replace their ageing, less efficient aircraft fleet with fuel-efficient Next-Generation 737s or the new 737 MAX.
In addition, Boeing expects that long-haul international traffic to and from North America to grow at an annual rate of 5 per cent over the next two decades, which will create a demand for an additional 1,320 fuel-efficient, twin-aisle jets such as the Boeing 787 Dreamliner.
However, large aeroplanes such as the 747 variant are not expected to see any significant demand in North America.