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MEBA2012: Honeywell outlook shows reason for cautious optimism

Posted 11 December 2012 · Add Comment

Rob Wilson delivered Honeywell Aerospace's business aviation outlook for 2013 at the Middle East Business Aviation Conference yesterday.

Rob WilsonThis year marks the 25th public release of the outlook, which is based on research from 1,500 flight departments around the world.

Wilson, Honeywell’s president business and general aviation, said that the company had seen the end of the delivery down cycle, with 2012 posting modest growth. He predicted that the industry would see less volatility, but recently-improved order rates face “economic headwinds”.

For business aviation, he said that the market for large cabin class aircraft was faring better, with operators signalling fairly steady purchasing activity in 2013.

The long-term outlook is for moderate recovery – orders for up to 10,000 aircraft worldwide worth $250 billion are projected from 2012-2022.

“Economic growth expectations are positive, but weakened – especially in the US and Western Europe,” said Wilson. “The emerging economies will have the highest purchase plans.”

Wilson added that fleet expansion plans are on the rise. The portion of respondents planning to grow their fleets in lieu of simply replacing an ageing plane almost doubled. But operators remain cautious.

In the Middle East and Africa, 32% of respondents plan to buy a jet, down from 38% last year.

Operators in the region said purchases may happen further into the next five-year timeframe, potentially influenced by recent political uncertainties.

Honeywell’s survey showed that range is the number one feature buyers worldwide look for in a new biz-jet. The second most popular is a larger cabin.

In the Middle East region buyers look at maintenance and direct operating costs (DOC) as their third most important quality.

Long-term economic confidence remains high, boosting interest in longer range and larger aircraft. The Middle East continues to drive large cabin purchase plans with a predominance of VVIP aircraft

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