Ethiopian Airlines placed an order yesterday (Nov. 14), including 20 Boeing 737-9 and 737-11 Max single-aisle airliners. The deal comes five years after the crash of an Ethiopian Airlines 737 Max that killed all 157 on board. Fallout from that accident, as well as a fatal Max crash involving Indonesia’s Lion Air five months earlier, led to worldwide grounding of the Max fleet.
Boeing’s long-term financial setback due to the grounding and subsequent legal action is estimated at some $20 billion.
In announcing the current agreement with Boeing, Ethiopian Airlines CEO Mesfin Tasew told reporters at the Dubai Air Show, “We believe we have checked and confirmed that the design defect of that aircraft has been fully corrected by Boeing. We have renewed our confidence in that aircraft,” according to a Reuters report.
Yesterday’s Ethiopian Airlines order also included 11 Boeing 787 Dreamliner widebody aircraft. In the announcement, the CEO added that the airline plans to exercise options on 21 more Max airliners, along with 15 more Dreamliner widebodies in the coming years.
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