UPDATE 2-Boeing raises jetliner demand forecast

Tue Jun 11, 2013 7:45am EDT
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* Revises up 20-year forecast by 3.8 percent

* Exec sees long-term scope for higher production

By Tim Hepher and Alwyn Scott

PARIS/SEATTLE, June 11 (Reuters) - Boeing upgraded its 20-year forecast for airplane demand as aerospace firms heading to next week's Paris Airshow look beyond the financial crisis to pin their hopes on Asia.

The U.S. planemaker said on Tuesday airlines, lessors and freight firms would need 35,280 new jets worth $4.8 trillion as the world's fleet doubles over the next two decades -- raising by 3.8 percent the company's previous 20-year outlook.

The bullish new forecast anticipates a surge in Asia-Pacific travel that will keep production rates at jet factories rising, but includes a downward revision of forecasts for Europe and North America where prospects for recovery are uncertain.

"By 2032, Asia-Pacific will be by far the world's largest travel market," Randy Tinseth, vice president for marketing at Boeing Commercial Airplanes told a news conference.

"There is no doubt the industry's centre of gravity is moving from the U.S. to Asia. Right now, 37 percent of all traffic touches Asia -- by 2032 it will approach 50."

Boeing said passenger and cargo traffic, both indicators of economic activity, are expected to grow 5 percent annually.   Continued...