Aircraft manufacturer Airbus on Monday said the Asia-Pacific region including India will lead the demand for new aircraft, with orders estimated at $1.2 trillion over the next 20 years.
"Asia-Pacific airlines are expected to take delivery of around 8,560 new aircraft over the next 20 years," Airbus said in a statement.
Valued at $1.2 trillion, the requirement represents 33% of new aircraft deliveries worldwide over the forecast period, with the region overtaking North America and Europe as the largest air transport market, it said.
The increase will be driven primarily by the growth of low cost carriers, as well as the opening of new secondary short haul routes, especially in China, India and South East Asia, it said.
The Airbus forecast is based on stronger than average growth in both passenger and freight traffic in the region, combined with replacement of many of the existing aircraft in service, it said.
In terms of growth, Airbus expects the number of passengers carried by Asia-Pacific airlines to rise by 5.8 per cent per year while the amount of freight passing through the region will increase by 7% annually.
This compares with global average increases of 4.8 per cent in the passenger market and 5.9% for cargo.
At the same time, carriers in the region are expected to replace 78% of the 3,680 aircraft currently in service, ensuring that they continue to operate some of the youngest and most eco-efficient fleets in the world, it added.
Airbus predicts that the region will continue to drive demand for larger aircraft types, reflecting the concentration of populations in the region around the main urban centres and the need for more seats between fast-growing mega-cities, it said.
As a result, it said, carriers in the region will acquire around 3,360 new widebody aircraft over the next two decades, representing 40% of all widebody deliveries worldwide.
This includes some 780 very large aircraft such as the A380 and around 2,580 twin aisle widebodies such as the A330 and new A350 XWB, it said.