The recent global financial recession notwithstanding, long-term airline traffic growth will average 4.7 percent per year, while cargo traffic grows at a slightly higher annual rate, 4.8 percent, according to the latest 20-year market forecast published by Airbus. However, the company projected a marked disparity between traffic growth in “advanced” and “emerging” markets. COO for customers John Leahy noted a divergence in gross domestic product GDP trends between the groups since 2000.
Airbus announced firm orders, purchase agreements and memoranda of understanding Wednesday at Aviation Expo China in Beijing covering 160 A320-family narrowbodies from four separate customers.
American Airlines parent AMR and US Airways agreed to extend their merger deadline by about a month to allow for the antitrust case filed by the U.S. Justice Department to run its course.
World airlines collected $27 billion in revenue from products and services other than ticket sales last year, according to the latest annual report by research company IdeaWorks. The total came from data from 53 airlines that disclose ancillary revenue activity.
European low-cost airline Norwegian Air Shuttle is expanding its intercontinental route structure as it takes delivery of new Boeing 787 Dreamliners. On September 3 the carrier, based in Fornebu, Norway, announced service to three new destinations in the U.S., scheduled to start next spring. It plans to use the 787 on routes between Scandinavia and Los Angeles, Oakland and Orlando international airports.
Canada’s WestJet has signed a letter of intent to buy 40 Boeing 737 Max 8s and 25 Max 7s, the Calgary-based low-fare carrier announced Thursday. The airline said it expects close a definitive purchase agreement with Boeing before September 30 and start taking deliveries in September 2017. Boeing values the order at $6.3 billion based on list prices.
The U.S. Justice Department pointed to what most in the airline industry would consider fairly innocuous comments by US Airways executives as evidence of how consolidation has harmed the flying public by resulting in higher airfares and reduced service.
It specifically cited US Airways president Scott Kirby’s remarks that consolidation has allowed for “three successful fare increases.”
Boeing has advised all operators of 787s to inspect their airplanes for “improperly configured” engine fire extinguisher bottles following discoveries by Japan’s All Nippon Airways and Japan Airlines of a problem in a total of four Dreamliners.
International Airlines Group (IAG), the parent company of British Airways, has secured firm orders and options for up to 220 Airbus A320 family narrowbodies, of which it plans to assign 120 to its Barcelona-based low-fare subsidiary, Vueling. IAG said the new aircraft will allow Vueling to replace some of its existing A320s and expand its business.
The latest “issue” affecting the Boeing 787 has the manufacturer investigating improper installation of a component associated with its engine fire suppression system. Japan’s All Nippon Airways and Japan Airlines on Wednesday each reported problems with at least one of their 787s that, in ANA’s case, delayed a flight from Tokyo Haneda Airport to Frankfurt for an hour and 42 minutes Wednesday morning.