Turboprop group ATR sees surge in demand in sector over next 20 years

PARIS (Reuters) - ATR, the world’s largest maker of turboprops, estimated on Monday a surge in business in its sector over the next 20 years that could result in demand for 3,000 new turboprops valued at more than $80 billion.

ATR, jointly owned by Airbus AIR.PA and Italian company Leonardo LDOF.MI, said one of the drivers for its bullish long-term forecast was expectations for 2,770 new routes potentially coming on board.

ATR, whose main rival is Canadian group Bombardier BBDb.TO, added that 30 percent of regional traffic by 2037 would come from routes which do not yet exist, while the cargo market would also contribute to rising demand for turboprops.

“The key driver for this positive outlook is traffic growth in regional connectivity,” ATR said in a statement.

“This comes from both traditional markets where less connected locations are being connected with direct regional new routes, as well as from emerging markets where the most viable solution for connecting people and transporting goods is turboprop air links,” added the company.

ATR said the biggest demand for turboprops in the next 20 years would come from Asia, which would account for 43 percent. Europe, Africa and the Middle East would count for 31 percent of demand, while the Americas would account for 26 percent.

Reporting by Cyril Altmeyer; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta