Events

SINGAPORE AIRSHOW 2024 HITS RECORD HEIGHTS

By Priyanka Elhence

Last month’s Singapore Airshow 2024, the ninth edition of Asia’s most influential aerospace and defence event recorded a huge success with the biggest trade attendee ever in history.

 

Returning to a full-scale edition this year, the highly anticipated Singapore Airshow 2024 held at the Changi Exhibition Centre from 20-23 February last month saw over 1,000 participating companies from more than 50 countries and regions. Also making a return was the Weekend@Airshow (formerly known as Public Days), for exciting flying displays, static displays, family friendly programmes, and the largest number of flying teams yet.

Singapore Airshow

Since its inception in 2008, the bi-annual Singapore Airshow has served as an important international platform for fostering collaboration between aerospace and defence stakeholders (industry leaders, government officials and military delegations) to forge strategic alliances, and exchange ideas and dialogue to shape the future of the global aviation industry, and chart a transformative course for both industries.

This year’s record number of nearly 60,000 trade attendees (a 10% increase from the previous high seen in 2018’s last edition), was the strongest trade attendance in Singapore Airshow’s history, signalling a strong recovery and renewed optimism in Asia Pacific’s regional aerospace landscape. Great news, especially since the region is forecasted to account for over 45% of new aircraft deliveries between 2023 and 2042. “We are delighted to announce this overwhelming response for this edition; it clearly signals a renewed optimism and momentum driving the sector forward. It certainly reaffirms Singapore Airshow’s role as a catalytic platform for industry sector professionals worldwide in the global arena to convene and draw up tomorrow’s agenda,” said Mr Leck Chet Lam, Managing Director, Experia, organiser of Singapore Airshow.

Singapore Airshow

The event also had sustainability at its core as it embraced clearer skies and welcomed a significantly larger gathering of international exhibitors, with 90% of the top 20 global aviation companies in attendance (including well-known exhibitors like Airbus, AVIC, BAE Systems, Boeing, Bombardier, COMAC, Dassault, GE Aerospace, General Dynamics, Honeywell, L3Harris, Leonardo, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, Rolls-Royce, RTX, Safran, ST Engineering, Textron Aviation, and Thales). Moreover, out of the 16 country pavilions, China, the Czech Republic and Korea were first-time country pavilions.

Singapore Airshow
Singapore Airshow
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AeroForum, Singapore Airshow’s thought-leadership forum, also hosted the largest volume of strategic conversations across its nine panel discussions, with 36 panel speakers and 10 moderators, and was attended by close to 600 trade attendees. Organised in collaboration with five top industry partners – Alton Aviation Consultancy, Association of Aerospace Industries (Singapore), Chinese Society of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Flight Global and McKinsey & Company – several topics spanning aviation leadership, regulatory regimes, technological advancements, sustainable aviation to reduce the industry’s carbon footprint, advanced air mobility and China-Singapore bilateral aviation were discussed.

Singapore Airshow
Singapore Airshow
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As a key platform for meetings and collaborations, Singapore Airshow also saw a number of major announcements being made, including several focused on meeting decarbonisation targets, including:

  • Airbus showcased its commitment to carbon neutrality by 2050, advocating for accelerated progress in sustainable aviation fuel production and unveiling plans in an agreement with TotalEnergies, which will supply Airbus with SAF (sustainable aviation fuel) for more than half of its needs in Europe.
  • Airbus also announced plans for a hydrogen-powered aircraft slated for operational debut by 2035.
  • Singapore proposed introducing a levy to support sustainable aviation fuel, reflecting the industry’s determination to meet its 2050 net-zero emission goal.
  • Boeing outlined its plans for autonomous flights by 2030.
  • Embraer announced a strategic partnership with Scoot, making the airline the first in the Asia Pacific to adopt Embraer’s Collaborative Inventory Planning solution, a tailored expendable spare parts management programme that “optimises” inventory levels for customers to reduce operational costs.

 

Singapore Airshow
Singapore Airshow
Singapore Airshow
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Several Asia-based airlines also placed several aircraft orders:

  • Starlux Airlines placed an order for five Airbus A350 freighters and three A330neo widebody passenger jets to support its fleet expansion.
  • Vietjet Air signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Airbus to purchase 20 A330-900 widebodies.
  • The international debut of China’s ARJ21 and C919 jet by Commercial Aircraft Corp of China (COMAC) garnered significant attention, with Tibet Airlines signing a 50-plane deal.
  • Thai Airways and Royal Brunei Airlines also announced orders for 45 and four Boeing 787 Dreamliners respectively.

 

Singapore Airshow
Singapore Airshow
Singapore Airshow
Singapore Airshow
Singapore Airshow
Singapore Airshow
Singapore Airshow
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Finally, Singapore Airshow 2024 was also home to the largest number of foreign flying teams performing impressive aerobatic manoeuvres, with a total of eight aerial displays including one flypast from six air forces and two commercial companies. The Indian Air Force’s Sarang showcased its aerobatic manoeuvres for the first time; as did the C919, a narrow-body airliner and the ARJ21 regional jet developed by Chinese aircraft manufacturer COMAC.

Also on display were the Royal Australian Air Force’s Roulettes, Indonesian Air Force’s Jupiter and Republic of Korea Air Force’s Black Eagles, The United States Air Force’s B-52 Stratofortress, with the Republic of Singapore Air Force’s integrated aerial display team featuring an F-15SG fighter jet and the AH-64D Apache attack helicopter capping the list.

 

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