Corporate Jet Investor’s Alasdair Whyte asked, “How’s business?” Each of the professionals sitting on the CJI Global We Sell Planes – Pushing Business Aviation in Asia responded similarly: The U.S. is going gangbusters. Europe is not too bad. Asia is seeing a lot of inventory going out – but not coming in.
Rohit Kapur, JetHQ President, Asia, participated in the panel alongside Jetcraft’s David Dixon and Bombardier’s Nilesh Pattanayak discussing the challenges the aviation industry faces in the Asia Pacific region.
No Supply, All Demand
The private aviation market is broadening. More concept buyers – a term used to describe people who have never purchased an aircraft – are entering the market. Additionally, existing owners are wanting to upgrade their aircraft via trade.
Right now, demand is high, but supply is low. Brokers are chasing aircraft and, if an owner hints at a coming trade, multiple buyers are making bids on the aircraft months in advance of sale.
Worldwide, there are approximately 20,0000 business aircraft – not enough to meet the needs of new and existing buyers.
Aviation Challenges in Asia
While panelists agreed that there’s greater acceptance in buying aircraft out of Asia, there are certain challengers buyers face.
Infrastructure: The U.S. boasts more than 5,000 airports. Panelists pointed out that Asia has only 250. In India, all airport builds are designed for commercial aviation. Regulators just don’t know what works for business aviation, or how to build for it.
Maintenance: A major roadblock to buying into aviation in Asia is maintenance. Fewer facilities, farther apart – on top of infrastructure challenges – makes the process of conducting a pre-buy inspection long and drawn out.
Mindsets: American sellers’ mindsets are often against selling aircraft outside the U.S. Why? The U.S. process is easier to understand and can be done more efficiently than a sale to a country in another region.
Infrastructure, mindsets and policies are difficult to change. The panelists agreed: We have to look at business aviation in Asia as an economic driver – not an unnecessary luxury.
Of course, the industry forecast is not all doom and gloom. The Australia ecosystem has a good, solid market. The charter market in the U.S. and Europe is growing. Those were not expected outcomes just 12 months ago at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic.
Panelists expressed hope. All in all, they said, it’s a good time to be selling pre-owned aircraft.
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