WASHINGTON, D.C. — According to newly released figures from the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA), the general aviation industry shipped fewer aircraft in the first three months of this year compared to the first quarter of last year.
“The entire industry is feeling the impact of retrenchment in the energy sector, as well as global geopolitical and economic insecurity,” GAMA President and CEO Pete Bunce said. “Despite these headwinds, our industry continues to invest in research, development, and certification of more efficient and safe products. Therefore, actions taken by elected officials to stimulate R&D and improve regulator efficiency have a far-reaching impact on the economy.”
Shipments of general aviation aircraft were soft across the board with only a handful of bright spots, he noted.
Piston airplane and rotorcraft shipments were stable at 191 and 60 in the first quarter compared to last year.
Business jet deliveries declined by 4.7% from 128 in first quarter 2015 to 122 in first quarter 2016.
The turboprop airplane segment’s deliveries slowed by 6.8% to 109.
Turbine rotorcraft also declined from 141 to 103.
“This is why the certification and consistency in regulatory interpretation reforms contained in both the U.S. Senate and House FAA reauthorization bills are so critical to our manufacturers and maintenance, repair, and overhaul companies in terms of getting innovations and new technologies to market,” Bunce continued. “We are also pleased that language contained in the Senate Transportation, Housing, and Urban Development Appropriations bill highlights the importance of these reforms. Both the authorizers and appropriators also recognize the importance of improving validation activities between global regulatory authorities to reduce duplicative review.”
“Next week, GAMA Board members will be on Capitol Hill, pressing home the need for these changes with members of the U.S. Congress,” Bunce said. “We will be calling on them to move forward on bipartisan FAA reauthorization and appropriations legislation that expedites delivery of new products to market, better leverages industry and regulatory resources, and reduces costs to customers.”