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  • Writer's pictureGary Crichlow

Dubai Airshow, 400+ Aircraft Worth USD 41 Bn

A regular update where our in house team of aviation experts and ISTAT certified appraisers use our data to analyse values, market movements and notable aviation news.

 

This week Gary Crichlow analyses passenger Narrowbody and Widebody orders at the 2023 Dubai Airshow. Datasets provided by Data Analyst Paul Saupe.


Order Tallies: over 400 aircraft worth USD 41 bn


Over the Dubai Airshow’s duration, AviationValues tracked formal orders of 411 commercial passenger Narrowbody (defined as single aisle aircraft in the Embraer E190 and Airbus A220 size category and larger) and Widebody (dual aisle) aircraft. Orders include firm commitments and options, as well as previously announced Memoranda of Understanding that were finalised at the show.

 

The value of these orders, based on Market Values as of 17 November 2023 for zero age aircraft, is calculated to be c. USD 41 bn. It is important to note that the actual order price paid is a matter of confidential negotiations between each orderer and the respective manufacturer. The final delivery price will also be subject to negotiated price escalation charges between the date of the order and the actual delivery.

 

Boeing garnered more than three quarters of the aircraft order announcements by aircraft count, and more than 80% by Market Value.


Orders of Commercial Passenger Narrowbody and Widebody Aircraft Announced and/or Finalised at the Dubai Airshow 2023 by Manufacturer


The 737 MAX was the dominant type ordered by aircraft count (we discuss the outlook for the 737 MAX in greater detail here). Turkish carrier SunExpress opened the show with a firm order of 45 MAXs. split 28:17 between the MAX 8 and MAX 10, plus another 45 options. Ethiopian Airlines also increased its commitment to the MAX with an additional 20 firm and 21 options for the MAX 8.

 

Emirates’ announcement for 90 Boeing 777X aircraft cemented that aircraft family as the most valuable order at the show. Boeing also garnered high value orders for its Boeing 787 family from Emirates, Ethiopian Airlines and flydubai.


Orders of Commercial Passenger Narrowbody and Widebody Aircraft Announced and/or Finalised at the Dubai Airshow 2023 by Aircraft Type


Airbus, having dominated the Paris Airshow earlier this year, had a quieter time in Dubai by comparison. Nonetheless it announced a significant additional order for 50 A220s (30 firm, 20 purchase options) from airBaltic, as well as A350-900 orders from Egyptair, Emirates and Ethiopian Airlines. Emirates indicated that while it was interested in ordering the larger A350-1000, it would not do so until it was happy with the type’s Rolls-Royce XWB engine time on wing performance.


Orders of Commercial Passenger Narrowbody Aircraft Announced and/or Finalised at the Dubai Airshow 2023 by Orderer

 

* Market Value based on zero age delivery value as of 17 November 2023. Actual future final delivery price subject to individual negotiation between the manufacturer and the orderer regarding specific price concessions and escalation.


* Market Value based on zero age delivery value as of 17 November 2023. Actual future final delivery price subject to individual negotiation between the manufacturer and the Orderer regarding specific price concessions and escalation.


Dubai vs Paris vs Farnborough: Airshow Announcement Trends

 

The 2023 Dubai Airshow tally of 411 passenger Narrow and Widebody commercial aircraft order announcements was 11% lower than the 2021 Dubai Airshow count. However, Widebody orders in 2023 featured much more prominently than they did in 2021, resulting in a total Market Value 46% above the 2021 total.

 

An analysis of three major biennial airshows (Paris, Farnborough and Dubai) since 2019 is presented below.


Orders of Commercial Passenger Narrowbody and Widebody aircraft announced and/or finalised at the Paris Airshow 2019 (PAS 2019), Dubai Airshow 2019 (DAS 2019), Dubai Airshow 2021 (DAS 2021), Farnborough Airshow 2022 (FAS 2022), Paris Airshow 2023 (PAS 2023) and Dubai Airshow 2023 (DAS 2023)

 

Paris 2023 was notable for its surge in order volume, of which 86% were earmarked for fleet renewal and growth plans of two operators from the same country: Air India and IndiGo Airlines. By contrast, the two largest orders at this year’s Dubai Airshow (Emirates and SunExpress) comprised 56% of the total order intake. This appears to be in line with other historical airshows: the two largest orders at Farnborough 2022 accounted for 60% of the 2022 tally and at Dubai 2019 the two largest orders accounted for 58%.

 

What is notable about Dubai 2023 is the percentage of Widebody orders, which eclipsed previous major airshows both in terms of count and value. The Middle East is dominated as a region by Widebodies, and this was reflected by the geographic makeup of the orderers, all of which were from the Middle East and North Africa. Emirates led with 63% of the total Widebody order tally; adding its Dubai partner airline flydubai, the United Arab Emirates accounts for over three quarters of the Widebody order announcements.

 

In 2019, orders finalised in Paris and Dubai accounted for 37% of the total 2,266 orders that year. Farnborough 2020 was canceled (for obvious reasons), as was Paris 2021. Dubai 2021 went ahead and accounted for 24% of the orders placed that year as airlines slowly started their recovery from Covid-19. That recovery was clearly evident in 2022 with a total of 2,905 orders placed; however, only 13% of those were announced at Farnborough 2022.

 

To date in 2023, the order trend has remained strong, buoyed to a significant degree by the Indian carriers’ orders in Paris. Overall, orders announced in Paris and Dubai have accounted for nearly half of all orders placed to date this year.


Orders of Commercial Passenger Narrowbody and Widebody Aircraft Announced and/or Finalised at PAS 2019, DAS 2019, DAS 2021, FAS 2022, PAS 2023 and DAS 2023 Compared to Total Annual Orders


Conclusion

Dubai Airshow 2023 was, from an ordering standpoint, a commercial success, particularly for Boeing. The pressure is now on to transform those orders into deliveries to meet demand.

 

Looking to 2024 and beyond, it remains to be seen whether the pace of order growth will continue: manufacturer backlogs are already at record highs, ramping up production rates is a challenge for the entire supply chain, and engine reliability issues persist. Economic headwinds, geopolitical uncertainty and climate concerns all continue to impinge on the industry.

 

Furthermore, while there is a growing acceptance that increased financing and leasing costs are now a market reality, it is not known what type of financing environment will prevail as these newly ordered aircraft become due for delivery.

 

With this level of uncertainty, AviationValues’ daily updated value and fleet analytics provides users with a key advantage: the availability of the most up to date historical and forecast value and fleet information whenever they need it.


Data as of November 2023.


Disclaimer: The purpose of this blog is to provide general information and not to provide advice or guidance in relation to particular circumstances. Readers should not make decisions in reliance on any statement or opinion contained in this blog.


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