The first CAE Airline Pilot Demand Outlook, revealed at the 2017 Paris Air Show, estimates that 255,000 new commercial airline pilots will be needed across the globe over the next 10 years.

The company believes that 50% of the pilots who will fly the world's commercial aircraft over the next decade have not yet started to train. It’s outlook also recognises the need to need to develop 180,000 first officers into airline captains (a greater number than in any previous decade).

Breaking down these numbers, CAE estimates that during the next decade the Americas will require 85,000 pilots; Europe will require 50,000; the Middle East and Africa will require 30,000; and the Asia-Pacific region will require 85,000.

Interestingly, CAE notes that one in ten pilots working in the Asia-Pacific region are expatriates due to airlines based there offering up to 15% premiums on salaries in comparison to the Western Hemisphere.

“The airline industry will need 70 new type-rated pilots per day for the next 10 years to meet global demand,” stated Nick Leontidis, CAE Group President, Civil Aviation Training Solutions. “This record demand will challenge current pilot recruitment channels and development programs. New and innovative pilot career pathways and training systems will be required to meet the industry's pilot needs and ever-evolving safety, competency and efficiency standards.”

CAE says the demand is being driven by an increase in passenger numbers – which IATA estimates will rise from 3.2 billion in 2017 to 4.8 billion in 2027. The company also notes the growth in city pairs being recorded by IATA, which are predicted to rise from 18,000 to 25,000 over the next decade. Finally, CAE says the overall global fleet growth will see active commercial aircraft grow from 25,000 in 2017 to 32,000 in 2027.

The demand can also be attributed to pilot retirement or attrition, which CAE guesses will account for the loss of 105,000 employees by 2027.