Saudi airline 'flyadeal' to operate all Airbus fleet in the future

Tuesday, 09 Jul, 2019

Saudi Arabian funds airline flyadeal is not going to proceed with a dedication to order 30 Boeing 737 MAX jets, the planemaker mentioned on Sunday.

In December 2018, Boeing had struck an agreement with flayadeal for 30 of the 737 Max jets with the option to purchase 20 more in a deal valued up to $5.9 billion at list price.

The move was in response to continuing growth in passenger demand across domestic, regional and worldwide routes, the airline said.

Notably, the Saudi carrier has exclusively been an A320 operator.

The company has been widely criticised over its development of the 737 Max, which included a flight handling system called the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS) that has been seen as a factor in both crashes.

Oman Air said in June it would start talks with Airbus if Boeing didn't provide "support and recovery" for the 737 Max. Moreover, 737 Max 8 jet flies approximately 50 nautical miles, which is significantly more than A320 Neo. But that was before the technical faults were detected.

The status of the Boeing order was not immediately clear. The decision marks a commercial setback for Boeing. After all, 737 MAX has been the fastest-selling airplane in Boeing history.

The statement comes as the FAA and other regulators are demanding numerous changes before the Max aircraft can return to service. In April, Virgin Australia pushed back delivery of its first 737 Max jets by nearly two years.

The announcement comes on the heels of last month's Paris Air Show where Saudia signed a deal with Airbus for a total of 100 new aircraft.

Meanwhile, Boeing is trying to pick up the pieces after a disastrous year.

Boeing disclosed in April that it has booked about $1 billion in charges related to fixing the plane.

The company continues to build the plane at a reduced rate of 42 a month (down from 52 previously) but is parking them at locations near Seattle and at a Boeing facility near San Antonio, Texas.