Airbus and Boeing: Top global aircraft manufacturers

Diana Estefanía Rubio

Airbus and Boeing: Top global aircraft manufacturers

Boeing and Airbus are the world’s two major competitors in commercial plane manufacturing. Other manufacturers produce far fewer aircraft than either of these two giants.

Since pilots are trained in either Boeing or Airbus operating systems, it is difficult for airlines to switch planes. Few companies have the capacity to produce large jets, so both Airbus and Boeing continue to have a long backlog of orders (8,598 at the end of 2023 for Airbus and 5,591 at the end of March for Boeing).

The two giants spent 2021-2023 recovering from the aftershocks that COVID-19 had on commercial travel. Boeing still has quite a way to go before reaching pre-COVID levels. In 2018, Boeing delivered 806 jets, and it is unlikely the aeroplane manufacturers will reach these numbers before 2025-26.

Boeing has been mired in a series of safety issues since the start of the year following a mid-air panel blowout on an Alaska Airlines 737 MAX 9 jet in January. This has led to a production slowdown for the American company, which is only able to produce 38 per month after being required by the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) advisory to adhere to more stringent quality and safety procedures.

font change