American aircraft manufacturers saw high demand at Dubai Airshow
American companies were the big winners at the 2017 Dubai Airshow, as UAE customers placed more than $44bn in new orders for commercial aircraft and defense-related equipment and services.
Yousef Al Otaiba, the UAE Ambassador to the United States, commented: “US companies remain the preferred supplier for UAE commercial and military aviation requirements. US exports of commercial and military aircraft, services and equipment to the UAE make up the largest share of America’s $19bn trade surplus with the UAE.”
At the Airshow, Emirates Airline placed firm orders for 40 Boeing 787-10 Dreamliner aircraft valued at $15.1bn. According to the US Department of Commerce jobs multiplier, this order alone will support 78,000 US jobs – both at Boeing and at its suppliers across the US.
Also at the Airshow, UAE-based regional airline flydubai announced a separate $27bn order for 225 Boeing 737 MAX Airplanes, the largest-ever single-aisle jet order by a Middle East carrier. flydubai operates an all-Boeing fleet of planes.
Al Otaiba further said: “The UAE’s airlines rely on Boeing airplanes to meet the growing demand for air travel in the region, and between the region and Asia, Africa, Europe and North America. Over the last decade, UAE customers have purchased over $150bn in Boeing aircraft, supporting hundreds of thousands of American jobs.”
The 787-10 aircraft will be assembled at the Boeing facility in North Charleston, South Carolina and the 737s will be manufactured in Renton, Washington.
Emirates is also the world’s largest operator of Boeing 777 aircraft, and was the launch customer for the 777X. In 2013, Emirates announced the largest commercial airplane order in the history of US commercial aviation with commitments and purchase rights for a total of 200 Boeing 777X aircraft. According to Boeing data, it has delivered or has on order a total of 329 aircraft for Emirates.
flydubai has a total of 361 Boeing 737s on its order books, with 63 planes already having been delivered. Abu-Dhabi-based Etihad currently flies 24 777 aircraft with 25 more on order, along with an $8.7bn order for 787-10 aircraft first announced in 2013.
Including the latest agreements, UAE airlines have received or have on order more than 800 Boeing aircraft, according to Boeing data.
In the defence sector, the UAE agreed to a $1.6bn deal with Lockheed Martin to upgrade the UAE Air Force’s fleet of 80 F-16 fighter jets. The F-16 “Block 60” is regarded as the most advanced version of that aircraft ever produced, and it forms the backbone of the UAE Air Force’s fleet. The UAE also announced a $684mn deal with Raytheon for precision-guided munitions.
Al Otaiba added: “The deals between UAE customers and US companies will support American jobs and help grow the US economy. The UAE is proud to partner with US manufacturers to create shared prosperity and advance our mutual security interests.”