On 11 September, chairman and CEO of Boeing, Dennis Muilenburg, spoke at the Morgan Stanley 7th Annual Laguna Conference, in California. Muilenberg addressed a few key points, but the 737 MAX crisis and the forthcoming end to the groundings were the main topics of Boeing presentation
Muilenburg told the audience that: “The situation with the 737 MAX continues to be our focus and we continue to send out deepest sympathies to the families of loved ones who were affected by the two accidents.”
Boeing is attempting to ‘weather’ the adversity without conceding too much damage to its brand name.
The 737 MAX’s return to service is the biggest question for Boeing, as the aircraft manufacturer continues to make “solid progress” and is “actively engaged with regulators around the world”. Nevertheless, the solid progress has encountered trouble, as the EASA,while speaking at the European Aviation Safety Agency’s has pointed to the fact tat Boeing is yet to provide a working solution to some of the hidden issues. In addition, EASA will test the 737 MAX software changes individually, rather than relying on the FAA.
Muilenburg remains confident that the fourth quarter of 2019 will likely see the return to service of the MAX. However, he also expressed concerns for Boeing in terms of “regulator alignment”. While Boeing is submitting “various certification documents” and is answering open questions from agencies worldwide, the discrepancies between agencies is “creating a timeline uncertainty”. It could mean that the 737 MAX returns to service on a country-by-country basis. Is this proves to be the case the entry into widespread service of the MAX could take significantly longer than Muilenburg’s estimate.