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As of 06:38 23 Sep 2019
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As of 06:38 23 Sep 2019

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Will the Boeing 737 Max be back?

Boeing 737 Max plane tails
Getty Images

Airline bosses are starting to express concerns about the likelihood of the Boeing 737 Max returning to service anytime soon.

This comes after Europe's aviation safety watchdog said it will run its own tests on the plane before approving a return to commercial flights.

Alexandre de Juniac, chief executive of the International Air Transport Association (IATA) told Bloomberg TV earlier this week that he is "worried and disappointed" that US and European regulators are not seeing eye-to-eye about re-certifying the plane model.

In the past, regulators around the world would have left it to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to approve design changes made by a manufacturer, but with the 737 Max, the European Union is currently conducting its own investigation and study into Boeing's proposed fixes for the aircraft.

“The challenge of the moment is certification,” Aengus Kelly, chief executive of AerCap, the world's largest independent aircraft leasing comapny told Bloomberg today.

“When will this airplane be permitted to fly on a global basis?”

'My entire family died in 737 Max crash'

Paul Njoroge on hearing the news and fighting for justice.
Paul Njoroge lost his wife, his three young children and his mother-in-law when their Ethiopia Airlines flight crashed shortly after takeoff in March 2019.

He blames Boeing, who make the 737 Max plane they were on. That model of aircraft has been grounded around the world whilst investigations into this crash and another in Indonesia in 2018 are investigated.

Boeing say "We extend our deepest sympathies to Mr. Njoroge. We truly regret the loss of life. The safety of passengers and crew flying on our aircraft is – and has always been -- our absolute priority. We are focused on working with global regulators on testing and implementing the software update, finalizing pilot training and working to rebuild trust with the travelling public safety and our airlines."

The Federal Aviation Authority say "these accidents have served as a catalyst for multiple inquiries. We welcome the scrutiny from these experts and look forward to their findings. The lessons learned from these tragedies will be the springboard to an even greater level of safety."

(Photo: Paul Njoroge and family before the airline crash  Credit: Reuters)

Senior profits hit by Boeing cut

Boeing 737 Max
Getty Images

Profits at British engineering group Senior have been hit by the fallout from Boeing's 737 Max production cut.

The company, which provides components to aeroplane makers, said pre-tax profits ito the end of June dropped 16% to £26.5m.

Hoever, revenue rose 11% to £580.4million in as the group offset the 737 Max impact with stronger sales on other civil and military programmes.

Chief executive David Squires said: "Notwithstanding the reported 737 Max production rate cuts and the ongoing uncertainty around the current geopolitical and macro-economic backdrop, overall the board expects to meet current expectations for 2019."

American Airlines also takes knock from Boeing

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American Airlines has also posted results and says its fleet includes 24 of the Boeing Max aircraft affected by the groundings, with an additional 76 aircraft on order, of which seven were scheduled to be delivered in the second quarter.

It estimates that the cancellations in the second quarter hit pre-tax income by approximately $175m.

This will rise to $400m for the full year, the company said.

Southwest hit from grounded planes

Southwest planes
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Southwest, the world's largest user of Boeing's 737 Max with 34 jets and dozens more on order, has taken a $175m hit in the second quarter from problems with the plane.

Gary Kelly, chief executive, said: "Our financial and operational performance was remarkably strong considering the impact of the grounding of the Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft, which reduced operating income an estimated $175m in second quarter, alone.

"Our employees did a heroic job managing approximately 20,000 flight cancellations under operationally difficult circumstances, while delivering excellent customer service."

Talks with Boeing about compensation are yet to be concluded, he said.