Air Canada said Tuesday that it is suspending deliveries of Boeing Co.'s (BA - Get Report) 737 MAX aircraft following the deadly March 10 crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 and the grounding in the company's planes over Canadian airspace.
Air Canada said it was expecting six new aircraft this month and next, but with deliveries on hold from Boeing, the carrier said it would revise its own schedule for further intakes of the 737 series jets in July. It also said it would "accelerate" the intake of Airbus A321 aircraft into its fleet from Iceland's WOW Airlines.
"The Boeing 737 MAX accounted for six per cent of Air Canada's total flying, but there is a domino effect from removing the 737s from our fleet that impacts the schedule and ultimately will impact some customers. We have been working very hard to minimize that impact," said chief commercial officer Lucie Guillemette. "To bring certainty to our schedule for our customers when booking and travelling, we are revising our schedule until July and we have taken several steps to continue delivering substantially all of our planned capacity through our global network."
Boeing shares were marked 1.24% higher Tuesday and changing hands at $376.50 each. a move that trims the stock's decline from the March 10 crash to around 10%.
Canada's Transport Minister said on March 13 that he would restrict the use of 737 MAX 8 and MAX 9 jets based on new information that links the aircraft's deadly crash in Ethiopia and Indonesia.
Marc Garneau told reporters in Ottawa that Boeing jets won't be able to land in, or fly out of, Canadian airspace. He also said the nation's two biggest carriers, Air Canada and West Jet, did not protest the decision, adding he won't hesitate to take "swift action" if officials find any more safety issues with Boeing planes.
"As a result of new data we received this morning, and had the chance to analyse, and as a precautionary measure, we are issuing a safety notice that ... restricts the operation of any Boeing MAX 8 or MAX 9 aircraft, domestic or foreign, from arriving or departing over Canadian airspace," Garneau said.
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