Indian market for new aircraft is the world's fourth largest in both number of units and value, according to Airbus Head Marketing (India) Joost Ven Der Heidjen.
Indian annual passenger traffic growth rates of 7.2 per cent are well above the regional Asia Pacific average rate of 5.9 per cent and the world average 4.8 per cent, he said
"Of the requirement for 1,020 new passenger aircraft, some 860 will be for growth and 160 to replace the oldest aircraft in the existing fleet of 327. By 2030, this means that India's passenger fleet will more than triple to some 1,180 aircraft," Heidjen said at a press conference here.
The new passenger aircraft include 646 single aisle aircraft like the A320 and A320neo Family, 308 twin aisles like the A350 XWB and A330, and 66 very large aircraft such as the A380.
Growing urbanisation and population concentrations combined with a growing middle class and dynamic economic growth are driving the demand, he said.
Despite near-term challenges, the Indian economy is forecast to continue expanding, helping growth in domestic air travel to reach even higher rates of nearly 10 per cent, making it one of the fastest growing aviation markets anywhere in the world, Heidjen said.Srinivasan Dwarakanath, vice president, international cooperation Asia-Pacific and Middle East, Airbus said half of all A320 forward doors and all flap track beams are produced in India.
The Airbus Engineering Centre India in Bangalore employs over 270 highly skilled local engineers and it is expected to grow to 450 over the next three years, he said.
Dwarakanath said Airbus is in discussions with two or three airlines for setting up Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul facility in India. He declined to share details of the proposed project.