Where is the aviation industry headed, and how long will it take us to get there?  Are we going to see growth, or are we going to stay stagnate or even decrease a little?  Are we going to have replacement pilots and mechanics, or will we have shortages?  According to the FAA Aerospace for Fiscal Years 2010-2030, the outlook is pretty good. 

Manufacturing has declined now for two years in a row.  Compared to 2008, manufacturers shipments decreased by 48.5 percent and billings have fallen 32.1 percent.  Of the manufacturing shipments, the overall piston market is down 55.1 percent with the single engine pistons being down 54.6 percent and the multi-engine pistons being down 64.8 percent.  Not only have the shipments and billings been down, but the general aviation activity has decreased by 11.9 percent in 2009.

Although the general aviation fleet is estimated to have grown 0.2 percent in 2009, general aviation flight hours are estimated to be down by 10.3 percent in the same year.  Despite the evident impact of the recession, which has been felt in all of the aviation market, the long-term outlook is excellent and “predicts business usage of general aviation aircraft will expand at a faster pace than that for personal/recreational use.  Over the next 21 years, the general aviation fleet is projected to increase at an average annual rate of 0.9 percent.

Overall, the number of general aviation hours in projected to increase by 2.5 percent yearly over the forecast period.  The number of active general aviation pilots is projected to increase 0.5 percent yearly, and student pilots are forecasted to increase 0.8 percent over the same period.  Private pilot growth is projected at an average yearly rate of 0.2 percent now through 2030.

Many companies have struggled and continue to struggle just to keep operations going.  Creativity has blossomed and business strategies have become much more competitive.  There have been mergers, acquisitions, closings and few expansions.  Although we are currently facing the worst economic downturn most of us have seen in our careers, the forecast between 2010 and 2030 looks great. 

Here at Special Services Corporation our goal is to continue to provide quality services at reasonable prices, all while maintaining the highest levels of customer service and safety.  We appreciate the opportunities that we have been given, and look forward to the future with all of our friends, colleagues and clients.

**All figures and quotes were taken from the FAA Aerospace Fiscal Years 2010-2030 report.***