Airbus retains its position as the world’s largest aircraft manufacturer

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Photo credit: Airbus. Copyright: Airbus - Master Films - Pascal Pigeyre

Building on a proud 100-year British aviation heritage, Airbus is part of the very fabric of the UK and has retained its position as the world’s largest aircraft manufacturer, delivering 661 commercial aircraft to 84 customers in 2022.

The aerospace giant’s 12,500-strong UK workforce is part of a global family of 130,000 employees around the world.

The Airbus factory in Broughton, Flintshire is one of the biggest employers in North Wales with more than 5,000 staff and as announced last year, the company is set to invest £100 million and create a further 500 jobs there. The factory produces the wings for all Airbus’ aircraft including the A320, A330, A340, A350 and the A380 superjumbo.

According the company’s most recent report, they delivered 661 commercial aircraft to 84 customers in 2022 and registered 1,078 gross new orders. Airbus’ end December 2022 backlog stood at 7,239 aircraft. 

Guillaume Faury, Airbus Chief Executive Officer said:

“In 2022 we served 84 customers with 661 deliveries, an increase of 8 percent compared to 2021. That’s obviously less than we were targeting but given the complexity of the operating environment I want to thank the teams and our partners for the hard work and the ultimate result.

“The significant order intake covering all our aircraft families including freighters, reflects the strength and competitiveness of our product line. We continue our ramp-up trajectory to deliver on our backlog.” 

In 2022, deliveries included:

 20222021
A220 Family5350
A320 Family516483
A330 Family3218
A350 Family60*55
A3805
Total661*611

* After a reduction of two aircraft (2 A350-900 AEROFLOT) previously recorded as sold in December 2021 for which a transfer was not possible due to international sanctions against Russia.

Airbus equally won 1,078 new orders (820 net) across all programmes and market segments, including several high profile commitments from some of the world’s leading carriers. In aircraft units, Airbus recorded a net book to bill ratio significantly above one.  

Per programme, the A220 won 127 firm gross new orders. The A320neo Family won 888 gross new orders. In the widebody segment, Airbus won 63 gross new orders including 19 A330s and 44 A350s of which 24 were for the newly launched A350F. 

In the next 20 years, Airbus forecasts demand for air transport to progressively shift from fleet growth to the accelerated retirement of older, less fuel-efficient aircraft, resulting in a need for some 39,000 new-build passenger and freighter aircraft, 15,250 of these for replacement.

As a consequence, by 2040 the vast majority of commercial aircraft in operation will be of the latest generation, up from some 13% today, considerably improving the CO2 efficiency of the world’s commercial aircraft fleets. The economic benefits of aviation extend beyond the sector, contributing around 4% to annual global GDP and sustaining some 90 million jobs worldwide.

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