Business Jet Deliveries Fall 32 Percent

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While corporate aviation continues to outdo other areas of the industry, the economy stills seems to have had its negative effect on this vital segment. The General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) claims deliveries of business jets were 32 percent lower than the same period a year ago. According to the organization's shipment report for third quarter 2003, the fall in business jet deliveries contributed to an overall 9 percent decrease in shipments of general aviation aircraft for the quarter. For the quarter, the industry delivered 338 business jets compared to 498 in the same quarter a year ago. The reports indicates deliveries of turboprop aircraft also fell more than 4 percent, from 170 in third quarter 2002 to 163. However, GAMA's data was not all bad, as the shipment of piston engine aircraft rose 0.2 percent for the quarter: 1,101 versus 1,099 in third quarter 2002.

"We hope that is a harbinger of better days for the entire industry," said GAMA President Ed Bolen in a statement.

Breaking down the shipments by major players in business aviation manufacturing: One hundred ninety-two for Cessna, including 42 Citation jets, 14 Caravan turboprops, and 136 piston-engine airplanes; Sixty-one for Raytheon Aircraft, including 21 bizjets, 18 King Airs, six Beech Barons and 16 Beech Bonanza A36s; Sixteen deliveries for Bombardier Aerospace, including 3 Learjet 45s and 3 Learjet 60s; and three deliveries for Boeing Business Jets.