The Middle East is the fourth fastest growing region in GDP terms
The Intra-Middle East is anticipated to become the fifth largest traffic flow worldwide
More than 50 percent of intra-regional routes have less than seven flights per week
Increase in capacity has led yields from Middle East carriers to drop by almost 30% over the last 5 years
Bombardier Commercial Aircraft's Market Forecast 2017-2036 covering the 60 to 150-seat segment sees growth in the Middle East with expected delivery of 450 aircraft in that market segment, or four per cent of the forecast 12,550 deliveries worldwide with a total value of US $820 billion.
The large regional aircraft category (60-100 seats) will account for 200 deliveries, while the small single-aisle category (100-150 seats) will take 250 aircraft. This will result in a fleet 3.4 times larger than at present.
"We are well positioned to take advantage of a move to strict capacity management in the region," said Jean-Paul Boutibou, Vice President, Sales, Middle East and Africa, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft. "Our Q400 high-speed turboprop, CRJ700, 900 and 1000 regional jets and new C Series small single-aisle jets can meet any requirement from 60 to 150 seats with unbeatable performance, economics and efficiency. We are the only aircraft manufacturer with that capability and we look forward to working with Middle East airlines as they expand their intra-regional networks."
The Forecast says that although Middle East airlines were profitable in 2016, the trend is downward. Double-digit capacity increases in the last two years to gain market share were achieved at the expense of decreasing yields due to the emergence of low-cost carriers in the region. The U.S. attempts to curb air travel from some Middle East countries has also put pressure on the region's widebody driven business model. This will result in a slowdown of widebody aircraft deliveries.
Middle East airlines now have an opportunity to re-examine and re-balance their fleet mix in order to develop intra-regional connectivity which has been largely bypassed in favor of inter-regional networks, to fit demand to capacity. Right-sizing of the fleet will lead to higher intra-regional market and penetration and improve yields, the Forecast says.