Boeing Falls Behind Airbus for Second Straight Year
Boeing commercial plane deliveries fell to the lowest level in 43 years while production plunged to a 59 year low amid coronavirus pandemic and restrictions on 737 Max.
Boeing leadership in the commercial planes industry ended in 2019 after it had outshined Airbus for seven straight years before the Max crisis.
Meanwhile, Europe-based Airbus has outpaced its closest rival Boeing for the second consecutive year despite a 34% year over year drop in deliveries due to pandemic. Airbus delivered 566 planes last year.
More Pain Is Ahead for Boeing
Boeing has resumed its flagship 737 Max jet production and deliveries in the final quarter of 2020, but market reports suggest that passenger airlines are likely to delay deliveries amid travel restrictions and lower air travelling demand.
The U.S. aerospace leader Boeing has only delivered just 157 jets in 2020 compared to 380 jets in 2019 and more than 800 plans in 2018.
Moreover, Boeing’s order backlog dropped by close to 1,000 aircraft in 2020 as passenger airlines have cancelled their orders for Max deliveries as the pandemic has devastated the fundamentals of the airline industry. However, at the same time, Airbus’s net order jumped by 268 airplanes, and the order backlog for its A320neo family stood at 5,833 airplanes.
Airbus chief executive Guillaume Faury is optimistic about the 2021 performance and hopes to increase production this year. The European plane maker plans to increase A320 single-aisle jet family production from 40 jets per month to about 47 per month in the second half of this year, with expectations for additional ramp-ups in 2022 and 2023.
The market analysts believe the passenger airline industry is likely to face more challenges in 2021 as people have been postponing their travel and tourism plans due to the virus spread across the world.