Aging helicopter replacement to drive global military rotorcrafts market to reach $28.4 billion by 2033, says GlobalData

The new rotorcraft acquisition programs initiated by some of the leading global militaries to replace their aging fleet of legacy platforms are anticipated to be a major factor driving the military rotorcrafts market growth over the next decade. For instance, the US is procuring the V-280 Valor for the replacement of its Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters under the Future Long-Range Assault Aircraft program. Against this backdrop, the worldwide market for military rotorcrafts is forecast to grow from $19.6 billion in 2023 to $28.4 billion by 2033, at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of approximately 3.8%, according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

GlobalData’s latest report, ‘Global Military Rotorcraft Market – 2023-2033,’ reveals that regional power struggles and territorial disputes are anticipated to remain the major growth drivers for increasing procurement of rotorcrafts by major countries worldwide. Furthermore, due to the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict, several European countries are also expected to increase their defense outlays, which will in turn drive the demand for military rotorcrafts in the coming decade.

Chandan Kumar Nayak, Aerospace and Defence Analyst at GlobalData, comments: “Increasing geopolitical tensions and regional conflicts have forced countries to raise their budgetary allocations for helicopter procurements. The armed forces are also considering the integration of emerging technologies that would enable them to conduct missions more proficiently. Countries such as the US and China are already developing technologies that leverage artificial intelligence (AI) to reduce the workloads of pilots and assist them with decision-making during missions. Similarly, the adoption of hybrid propulsion systems is also being considered for next-generation military helicopters to improve flight performance. With these technological advancements, future military rotorcrafts are expected to provide superior flight performance and attack capabilities.”

Several other countries such as Turkey and South Korea are also focusing on increasing the level of indigenization through technology transfer agreements and partnerships with leading global helicopter manufacturers. These countries are investing significant resources in establishing domestic R&D and manufacturing infrastructure and reducing their dependence on imports to fulfill their military requirements. Similarly, India’s development and induction of multiple indigenously manufactured helicopters including the Light Combat Helicopter (LCH), Light Utility Helicopters (LUH), and Indian Multi Role Helicopter (IMRH) is intended to modernize its armed force’s vertical lift capabilities.

The transport and utility helicopter is expected to be the largest segment within the military rotorcraft market, owing to the increasing demand from the armed forces to undertake supply and logistics operations. Armed forces around the world are looking to induct rotorcraft with multirole capabilities and modern technologies.

Nayak concludes: “The increasing complexity and cost of military rotorcraft development are necessitating international cooperation, as countries seek to share the costs and risks of developing and acquiring new rotorcraft platforms. For instance, France, Germany, Italy, Greece, the Netherlands, and the UK have signed an MoU for the development of a new medium-lift helicopter for NATO under the Next-Generation Rotorcraft Capabilities (NGRC) project.”

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