Backlog of almost 13,000 aircraft: on-time delivery has become utopian among aircraft manufacturers

International aviation is facing a serious shortage of aircraft. But the aircraft manufacturers see no opportunity to quickly close the gap. That’s what analysts at the news agency say Bloomberg. The experts fear that, as a result, global aviation will have to work for some time with a fleet that is unable to meet passenger demand.

However, this also means that the consumer may have to take into account that he will have to pay higher rates for a longer period of time.

Why is this important?

Airlines are currently placing orders for hundreds of aircraft. The aircraft manufacturers Boeing and Airbus can therefore continuously announce gigantic orders. However, due to supply chain constraints, these devices will not be available for several years. This creates several problems.

Backlog occurs: Consultant Jefferies estimates that there is currently a backlog of 12,720 aircraft processing orders for new aircraft.

  • All of this means that the soaring airfares many travelers have complained about in recent months may well continue. “The situation may get even worse before it improves,” he said. “There are not enough planes to carry all the travelers.”
  • “Reopening China to international air traffic is likely to make the situation worse,” argues Ajay Awtaney, founder of, a platform for frequent flyers. “It’s not just a lack of planes that drives the rates up. Other factors, such as oil prices, also contribute to these trends.”
    • Production of the popular narrow-body aircraft has been out of production at Boeing and Airbus for a period of six years.
      • The problem is compounded by problems in the supply chain – from spare parts shortages to labor shortages.
      • Airbus had previously planned to deliver 700 aircraft annually, but has now scaled back those ambitions.
  • Air Lease Corporation, lessor of aircraft, notes that not a single purchased aircraft has been delivered on time in the past two years.
    • “On average, a delay of between six and seven months should be expected on the promised delivery dates,” said Steve Udvar-Hazy, CEO of Air Lease Corporation.
    • “This is a combination of a number of factors. There are bottlenecks in the supply chains, but production has also been ramped up too quickly and the labor shortage needs to be addressed.”
  • The thousands of planes that were parked in deserts around the world by the airlines during the outbreak of the corona crisis also offer no consolation.
    • “A large part of that fleet would have to undergo particularly thorough maintenance before the aircraft could be used again,” the experts state.
    • “Other aircraft belong to a type that would be decommissioned and therefore were not actually intended to ever fly again.”

Extended life cycle: The experts warn that the tariffs could rise even more if business traffic also returns to its previous levels, and more people want to reward themselves with a holiday after the restrictions of the corona crisis.

  • It may also mean that older aircraft will be flown. “As a last resort, some airlines may decide to extend the life of their aircraft,” said Sunny Xi, an analyst at consultancy Oliver Wyman.
  • However, the delays in deliveries are also beginning to cause problems for the aircraft manufacturers.
    • “More and more airlines are hesitant to place new flight orders,” say the experts.
    • “For some models, a time frame of more than eight years between the time of the order and the final deliveries should be taken into account.”

Light point: However, some experts claim that there may be one small bright spot in the situation. It has to do with employment.

  • “It is unlikely that workers in the industry will be laid off any time soon,” said George Ferguson, an analyst at Bloomberg Intelligence.
    • “Order books are large enough that a recession will have little impact on employment at this point.”
    • “Even with temporary economic downturns, the aircraft manufacturers and airlines will want to keep their people with them.”


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