It has been reported that Ryanair has stopped payments to Boeing as it waits for the 737 MAX to be granted approval to resume commercial operations again. The information was made public via Bloomberg as the airline’s CEO Michael O’Leary was addressing the audience of Ryanair’s annual shareholders meeting. The airline has 135 MAX jets on order at a list price of US$160 billion.
Additionally, the Financial Times reports that Ryanair has no alternative plan to a scenario where the MAX is grounded permanently. However, this is presumed by analysts to be unlikely. O’Leary is hoping that the grounding order will be lifted within the next three months:
“If it flies in North America this side of Christmas than I think we’re pretty secure. We’ll be back flying by sometime in the end of February/March. If it runs any later than March, April, May – we will have to take more aircraft out of next summer’s schedule and slow down the growth further.”
The first 737 MAX 200 should have been issued to the airline earlier this year. But, deliveries were postponed due to the re-certification of the type. The airline had intended to have 58 in service by the summer of 2020.