© Stocksak. FILE PHOTO – The Boeing logo can be seen on the side a Boeing 737 MAX at Farnborough International Airshow in Farnborough, Britain, on July 20, 2022. REUTERS/Peter Cziborra/File photo
Brenda Goh and Jamie Freed
(Stocksak) –China Southern Airlines Co Ltd booked domestic flights with the 737 MAX in October, according to a booking search on their website. This marks a possible return of service for the Boeing (NYSE 🙂 Co model after more than three decades. If the flights are completed, they would be the first 737MAX passenger flights since March 2019, when China’s aviation regulator grounded their model following fatal crashes in Indonesian, and Ethiopian planes. Cirium data from 2019 shows that Chinese airlines had 97 of these planes prior to the grounding.
China Southern did not immediately reply to a request for comment.
Although a Boeing spokesperson declined to comment about China Southern’s plans, he said that the manufacturer was continuing to work with regulators to return the 737 MAX safely to service around the world.
Boeing stated Wednesday that it still had 138 planes made for Chinese carriers in the United States and was waiting to be delivered. However, it began remarketing the planes to other carriers as there were no signs that Chinese airlines would take the planes. China is the only major market where airlines have not returned 737 MAX planes to passenger flying. “It is really difficult for me to find signals, that things will change in China, and move in our favor,” said Boeing Chief Executive David Calhoun to analysts during an earnings call. According to FlightRadar24 data FlightRadar24 data, China Southern has flown at least two 737 MAX jets in test flights over the past week. This is a move that would be expected prior to commercial service returning. A 737 MAX flight of MIAT Mongolian Airlines landed in Guangzhou earlier this month. This was the first commercial flight made by the model in China since 2019.