Although Boeing's (NYSE: BA ) widebody 787 Dreamliner has commanded much media attention lately, it's going to be single-aisle aircraft like the 737 and the company's future 737 MAX that will comprise the bulk of demand for airplanes over the next 20 years.
Unveiling its Current Market Outlook in Paris today, Boeing said it estimates there will be a global need for 35,280 new airplanes during the next two decades as both passenger traffic and cargo traffic grow 5% annually. The company values those planes at $4.8 trillion and forecasts the world fleet to double over the next two decades.
Boeing VP of Marketing for Commercial Aircraft Randy Tinseth was quoted as saying: "This forecast gives us confidence as we increase our production rates and invest in new products like the 777X and 787-10X. Airlines are demanding more efficiency and that is exactly what we'll be giving them."
Boeing anticipates 70% of the demand will fall into the single-aisle market while widebodies like the 747-8, 777, and even its 787 Dreamliner will comprise 24% of the need. Regional jets will make up the balance. The growth of low-cost carriers and airlines from emerging markets will push this movement.
Most of the demand will come from the Asia-Pacific region, Boeing predicts, with China being among the biggest customers, or 36%, for the planes. Another 21% will come from Europe and North America will account for 20.5% of the total.
Boeing projects that 14,350 of these new airplanes needed over the next two decades (nearly 41% of the total new deliveries) will replace older, less-efficient airplanes, while the remainder will be for fleet growth.
Click here to watch a video of Fool analyst Blake Bos talking about the investing takeaway from Beoing's latest global forecast.