The UK’s aerospace sector continues to be in good health after it saw its strongest performance for aircraft orders and deliveries since July 2018, a report from ADS shows.

Following a record-breaking first half of 2023, the trade association for aerospace, defence, security and space organisations said 112 aircraft orders were placed in July 2023.

There were also 109 aircraft delivered in that month, marking the best July since 2018, as the aerospace sector continues its post-pandemic recovery.

Aircraft orders and deliveries

The latest report highlights the delivery of 691 aircraft in 2023 to date. Year to date, 1,179 aircraft orders have been placed, with 112 orders placed in July – a healthy order number following the record-breaking orders made at Paris Airshow in June.

So far in 2023, there have been 136 cancellations of aircraft, 68 per cent down compared to 2022 (as a full year) and is an indication of decision makers holding firm on the choices of aircraft previously made.

The backlog of aircraft orders continues to be above pre-pandemic levels and compared to July 2022, grew seven per cent to 14,462 aircraft. At current production rates, the aircraft order backlog represents more than seven years’ worth of work and a value of £219 billion to the UK.

Unique opportunity for UK to power sector for years to come

Aimie Stone, chief economist at ADS, said: “With the aircraft order backlog remaining above pre-pandemic levels and continuing to grow, the long aircraft lead times from order to delivery means decision makers can take charge to enhance innovation.

“The backlog will enable future aircraft to become more efficient and sustainable, with UK industry having a unique opportunity to identify, accelerate and develop more efficient and sustainable aircraft technologies.”

ADS Group is the UK trade organisation for aerospace, defence, security and space organisations, with more than 1,200 member businesses.
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