The Russian airlines will need more than 900 passenger aircraft over the next 20 years in response to the strong growth in this market, according to the latest Airbus Global Market Forecast (GMF).
The Russian passenger aircraft fleet of 100 seats or more is expected to grow strongly from 528 aircraft in service in 2006 to nearly 950 by 2026. Over the next 20 years, Russia will require more than 900 aircraft to meet demand for aircraft replacement as well as fleet growth. This will represent a value at current list price of US$ 79 billion. These additional aircraft will include nearly 800 short haul - single-aisle aircraft which are currently prominent in the region's fleet and some 120 medium to long-range wide-body aircraft to satisfy international travel strong growth.
The growing demand for aircraft is the consequence of the strong growth of passenger traffic in Russia, which is expected to increase at a rate of 6,2 per cent per year on average over the next 20 years, much faster than the world average of 4,9 per cent.
This strong demand for air transport in Russia is driven by the impressive economic development in the region with domestic demand growth expected to be the highest in the world at over 10 per cent for the next five years. In addition, the real disposable income per capita in Russia has grown six-fold over the last eight years. Hence, international travel has become affordable to 20 million additional Russian tourists today compared to 1999.
Airbus is confident that it has the right range of products to respond to the Russian airlines' demand over the next 20 years:
Airbus has been working with the Russian aviation sector since 1991. In that year, the twin-engine, wide-body A310 became the first Western-built aircraft to receive a Russian Type Certificate and then to enter service with Aeroflot. Since then, Airbus-Russian commercial activities have gone from strength to strength. Today, in the CIS, 12 airlines are operating a total of 92 Airbus aircraft, including 68 aircraft in operation with five Russian carriers. One hundred and eleven more aircraft will be delivered in the near future to the CIS. In 2007, Airbus received firm orders from Aeroflot (22 A350 XWB and five A321s), S7 (25 A320s), Uzbekistan Airways (six A320s) and Ural Airlines (seven A320s). Additionally, in December 2007 Airbus signed a memorandum of understanding with Air Astana for six A320s.