Boeing forecasts that demand for air cargo services would more than double by 2041, with traffic tripling and the world's freighter fleet rising by more than 60%. At The International Air Cargo Association forum in Miami, Boeing revealed insights from its 2022 World Air Cargo Forecast (WACF), a biennial detailed analysis of evolving market dynamics.

The 2022 WACF projects that the world's cargo fleet will require nearly of 2,800 production and converted freighters for growth and replacement through 2041. With cargo traffic doubling over the forecast period, operators will need to switch to more capable, fuel-efficient and sustainable jets like the 777-8 Freighter to meet demand, according to the forecast. A third of deliveries will consist of new production freighters, while the remaining two-thirds will be freighter conversions, such as the 737-800 Boeing Converted Freighter (BCF), providing carriers with increased flexibility in existing and emerging markets.

"While the air cargo market is returning to a more normal pace after historic demand in the last two years, structural factors including express network growth, evolving supply chain strategies and new cargo-market entrants are driving sustained freighter demand," said Darren Hulst, Boeing vice president of Commercial Marketing. "In the global transportation network, air freighters will continue to be a critical enabler to move high-value goods, in increased volume across expanding markets."

According to the 2022 WACF, the Asia-Pacific area will get roughly 40% of all freighters, including new and converted freighters. Despite accounting for only 8% of the overall commercial aviation fleet, dedicated freighters continue to transport more than half of all air cargo, with passenger planes carrying the balance as belly cargo. Over the next two decades, the global freighter fleet will increase by more than 1,300 airplanes to more than 3,600 jets.

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