Aircraft leasing companies look forward to the opportunities in an industry emerging from Covid

February 01, 2022

Source: World Leasing Review, Winter 2022 edition

by Declan Kelly, Chair of Aircraft Leasing Ireland

Early in October 2021, ISTAT (The international society of transport aircraft trading) held its first European in-person conference since the start of the pandemic. The gathering in Edinburgh was almost at full capacity, with the mood around the fringes of the conference brimming with optimism about the prospect for a full recovery in aviation and how leasing will play a starring role.

A key feature around every ISTAT conference is networking and the queues for the coffee dock signify how much the attendees have missed those interactions in the last two years.

ALI is the body which represents the world’s largest leasing companies. Like every other business involved in aviation, the last 18 months has been challenging for all of us. Responding directly to that challenge has marked my first year as the Chair of ALI, a period that has been dominated by working closely with our airline customers to manage rental deferrals and in some, but a limited number of cases, we have had the unenviable task to repossess aircraft.

I am now well into the second half of my tenure and despite new challenges with Omicron, we have seen recovery in the sector. While it's still too early to gauge the full impact of Omicron, there are some opportunities emerging for the leasing industry.

The Boeing 737 MAX aircraft has returned to the skies and domestic economies are recovering nicely with some economies like China experiencing numbers of flights that are higher than pre Covid levels.

There has been a plateauing recovery effect both domestically and internationally tracking global vacation rates, especially in the Asia Pacific region. Despite Omicron and new variants which are causing more travel restrictions, we are hopeful that we can see global traffic continuing to recover in 2022.

Download the full article below.

WLR Winter 2022 with Declan Kelly pdf | 515.8 kb