22% of MEA Heli Fleet to be replaced or added, says Honeywell
Over a fifth of the Middle East and Africa's helicopter fleets are earmarked for replacement or expansion, according to Honeywell's latest 'Turbine-Powered Civil Helicopter Purchase Outlook.'
However, acquisition plans within the region, which has the world’s second-highest regional new purchase rate are 8 percent lower than last year’s survey results, according to the Outlook report.
The Outlook says within MEA, close to 80 percent of planned new helicopter purchases are intermediate and medium twin-engine models with light single-engine models ranked the second-highest by operators.
The annual Outlook report – the 19th in the series – says the helicopter industry at large is being cautious about near-term purchases due to a slow global economic growth environment and volatility in oil and gas-related markets. The Outlook forecasts 3,900 to 4,400 civilian-use helicopters will be delivered worldwide from 2017 to 2021, roughly 400 helicopters lower than the 2016 five-year forecast.
“The current global economic situation is causing fleet managers to evaluate new helicopter purchases closely, and that’s why we’re seeing a more cautious five-year demand projection compared with previous years,” said Ben Driggs, President, Americas, Honeywell Aerospace. However, Driggs says that Honeywell is well-placed to help operators handle the vagaries of the slow growth economy. “Honeywell is well-positioned to help operators keep current fleets lasting longer with aftermarket upgrades and repairs,” he added.
This year’s Outlook surveyed more than 1,000 chief pilots and flight department managers of companies operating 3,746 turbine and 362 piston helicopters worldwide, excluding large fleet or ‘mega’ operators, which were addressed separately. The Outlook also absorbed input from large oil and gas support, emergency medical service fleet operators and individual flight departments.