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General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) released its report of general aviation aircraft shipments and billings through the third quarter of 2020. Piston airplane deliveries increased slightly, while turboprop, business jet and helicopter deliveries declined through the first nine months of 2020 as compared to the same period of 2019.
“This latest shipment report gives insight into how the industry is faring after the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said GAMA president and CEO Pete Bunce. “While we are still trailing in comparison to last year’s figures due to a virus impacted second quarter, it is encouraging to see deliveries in certain segments have rebounded. This is reflected in what aviators have witnessed over the past few months at GA airports on both sides of the Atlantic where flight activity is robust, particularly in the flight school arena.
“It is also worth noting that this is the first quarter in history where we are reporting certified electric aircraft deliveries. This portends an exciting evolution in propulsion technologies and highlights another pathway in our industry’s multifaceted efforts toward, and commitment to, environmental sustainability. While the industry has shown its resilience, it will likely once again face stiff headwinds from the resurgent pandemic, especially given that many European countries have once again gone into lockdown without a common pan-European policy enabling general and business aviation travel across national borders. Despite these significant challenges, it continues to be our dedicated workforce that enables our industry to persevere through the recovery process.”
Airplane shipments through the first nine months of 2020, when compared to the same period in 2019, saw piston airplane deliveries increase 1.4 per cent, with 889 units; turboprop airplane deliveries decline 27.0 per cent, with 254 units; and business jet deliveries decline 26.7 per cent, with 378 units. The value of airplane deliveries through the third quarter of 2020 was $11.9 billion, a decline of approximately 20.1 per cent.
Civil-commercial turbine helicopter deliveries for the first nine months of 2020, when compared to the same period in 2019, saw a decline of 23.3 per cent, with 333 units; and piston helicopter deliveries saw a decline of 25.5 per cent, with 105 units.