Airbus sees Australia, Pacific nations buying 920 jets in next 20 years

The surge in demand underscores a rapid recovery in travel following the pandemic.

SYDNEY: Airbus SE expects the Pacific region — Australia, New Zealand and neighbouring nations — to take delivery of 920 planes in the next 20 years, underscoring a fast revival in travel following the pandemic.

The demand includes about 750 single-aisle jets, like the best-selling A320 family of aircraft, and about 170 bigger planes, Airbus said in a statement Monday. More than half of those aircraft will be for growth, while the rest will replace existing and ageing planes.

Air travel has bounced back stronger than expected by most airlines and airports after Covid shattered the industry, with companies increasingly allowing executives to fly for meetings and the general public making trips which were out of reach for years.

“We are seeing a surge in travel demand and an increase in flights to and from key destinations,” said Stephen Forshaw, Airbus’s chief representative for Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific.

The Pacific region has 170 Airbus aircraft currently in service with airlines in Australia, Fiji, New Caledonia, New Zealand, and the Solomon Islands, and another 166 aircraft are currently on order in that region, he said.