Aircraft backlog keeps climbing

Air travel demand soared after a precipitous drop at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, and it hasn’t let up. Commercial-aerospace OEMs and suppliers are finding it challenging to keep up, senior partner Mike Parkins and coauthors note. New aircraft orders total about 15,700, and filling the record-high open-order backlog would take 13 years at 2023 delivery rates.

The commercial aerospace open-order backlog has grown to an all-time high of about 15,700 aircraft.

Image description:

A square comprising 16,939 dots represents the total number of fulfilled and unfulfilled narrow-body and wide-body commercial aircraft orders in 2023. Within this square, a smaller square comprising 1,236 dots, occupying ~1/13 of the total area, represents the fulfilled commercial aircraft orders in 2023. The remaining 15,703 dots represent the unfulfilled commercial aircraft orders in 2023.

Source: Cirium; International Air Transport Association (IATA); McKinsey Aerospace & Defense Practice.

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To read the article, see “Addressing continued turbulence: The commercial-aerospace supply chain,” April 3, 2024.