India will be the world’s fastest-growing aviation market over the next two decades, according to Boeing, which expects the South Asian nation to need 2,380 planes in that period at a value of $330 billion.
The US manufacturer’s forecast is slightly higher than the one it made in December 2018, when it said India would require 2,300 new aircraft for $320 billion over 20 years. At a briefing in New Delhi on Wednesday, Boeing’s deputy vice president of commercial marketing Darren Hulst said first deliveries of the 777X are planned in the next 18 months.
Hulst also said Boeing is working closely with regulators to get the 737 Max back into operation in the US this quarter and then elsewhere depending on regulatory approvals. The previously best-selling jet has been grounded globally since mid-March
following deadly crashes in Ethiopia and Indonesia.
SpiceJet Ltd, which has as many as 205 737 Max jets on order, has said it may buy at least 100 Airbus planes worth more than $10 billion as Boeing grapples with the fallout from its grounded plane. Boeing also lost a $25 billion, 210-aircraft order from Jet Airways India earlier this year after the carrier stopped flying.
Compounding matters, rival Airbus just announced a blockbuster order from Indian market leader IndiGo.
The failure of Jet Airways dented air traffic growth in India as it took more than 100 aircraft out of action almost overnight, while a slowing economy has also pegged numbers back.
Still, air-travel penetration remains low in the nation of 1.3 billion, encouraging airlines to expand rapidly even as provincial taxes push up the cost of jet fuel.
EU air-safety regulator denies dragging out 737 Max review
Europe’s air-safety regulator defended its scrutiny of Boeing Co’s grounded 737 Max after one of the model’s biggest customers said the agency has
become an obstacle to the jet’s return.
European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) Executive Director Patrick Ky hit back at claims from Ryanair Holdings chief Michael O’Leary that the authority is “dragging its heels” over the Max, saying it’s simply fulfilling its obligations.
“If Mr O’Leary doesn’t like it, that’s his problem, but it’s not going to put pressure on me
to go faster, I can assure you,” Ky said in Helsinki. “We are doing what we think is right.”
Tensions are running high as the Max’s idling after two fatal crashes threatens to extend into next year, hurting carriers that are relying on the model to lift margins. Ryanair has 135 orders for the jet and says it may get only 20 of the 60 due for next summer even if the revamped 737 flies again by Christmas.