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Asia-Pacific needs 13,000 new planes by '32: Boeing

SINGAPORE--Asia-Pacific airlines will need almost 13,000 new planes worth US$1.9 trillion over the next two decades as rising wealth in the region fuels demand for air travel, Boeing said Monday.

The U.S. plane maker said on the eve of the Singapore Airshow that 12,820 extra aircraft would be needed by 2032, and the region would account for 36 percent of global deliveries of passenger and freight planes during the period.

It also estimated the total Asia-Pacific airplane fleet would reach 14,750 in that time compared with 5,090 in 2012.

Boeing's European rival Airbus had said last year that Asia-Pacific carriers would take delivery of 9,870 new passenger and cargo aircraft valued at US$1.6 trillion over the next 20 years.

Airbus will have its own press briefing at the Singapore Airshow on Tuesday, but on Monday it invited journalists to a display of its latest plane, the A350-XWB, which is expected to come into service later this year.

“Over the next 20 years, nearly half of the world's air traffic growth will be driven by travel to, or from within, the region (Asia),” Boeing said in a statement.

Randy Tinseth, Boeing's vice president for marketing, said: “New low-cost carriers and demand for intra-Asia travel have fuelled the substantial increase in single-aisle planes.”

Single-aisle planes such as Boeing's next-generation 737 and the 737 MAX will represent 69 percent of new airplanes in the region, the U.S. aircraft maker said, driven by a rise in the number of budget carriers.

Budget airlines from Indonesia, India, Thailand and Malaysia accounted for over half of global low-cost carrier seat capacity growth last year, according to a study by travel technology company Amadeus.

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An Airbus A350-900 test plane is seen at Singapore's Changi Airport at a media preview ahead of the Singapore Air Show on Monday, Feb. 10.

(AP)

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