NEWTOWN, Conn., 4 April 2013. Roughly 4,796 medium/heavy military rotorcraft, having an estimated production value of $114.4 billion, will be produced between 2013 and 2022, according to the latest study from Connecticut-based market research firm Forecast International.
The annual production of medium/heavy military rotorcraft, defined as having a gross weight of 6,804 kilograms (15,000 pounds) or greater, has grown steadily since 2005. The new Forecast International study projects that growth will continue in 2013, forecasting production to reach 615 rotorcraft, after which yearly production will enter a period of gradual decline, falling to 380 rotorcraft by the year 2022.
The anticipated decline is attributed to several factors: The budgetary environment in the U.S. and many other nations has become severe, and high levels of government debt are forcing officials to look for areas, such as military budgets, in which to reduce spending.
Further, key military rotorcraft acquisition programs are well into their production runs and will soon run their course. Other programs have been stretched out, with smaller annual procurement lots. At the same time, few major new procurement programs have emerged that would help keep overall build rates growing. Order backlogs at manufacturers are declining. As the market shrinks, the competition among manufacturers for market share will become more fierce.