Skip to Main Content

05/24/2024 |

Delays in Boeing Deliveries to China Amid Regulatory Review

This is an image of the Boeing logo

Boeing’s Deliveries to China Stalled by Battery Review

Boeing‘s plane deliveries to China have encountered delays due to a Chinese regulatory review of the batteries powering the cockpit voice recorder. The U.S. planemaker is coordinating with Chinese customers on delivery schedules as the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) completes its review. Boeing’s year-end 2023 filing indicated an inventory of about 140 737 MAX 8 aircraft, with 85 destined for Chinese customers. Although Boeing has delivered 22 aircraft to China in 2024, no new planes have been delivered in recent weeks due to the ongoing review.

Regulatory and Trade Tensions Impacting Deliveries

The extent and duration of the CAAC’s review are currently unclear, potentially impacting Boeing’s delivery targets. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has certified the 25-hour cockpit voice recorder system, which stores more data than previous versions, and it has been accepted by European regulators. However, Boeing is deferring to both the FAA and CAAC for further regulatory discussions. Concurrently, trade tensions between the U.S. and China continue, with new higher tariffs on $18 billion in Chinese goods set to take effect on August 1

Historical Context and Future Implications

Boeing resumed deliveries of its 737 MAX jets to China in January, ending a nearly five-year import freeze following two fatal accidents in 2018 and 2019. Congress recently mandated the inclusion of 25-hour cockpit voice recorders in all future planes. Aircraft deliveries are crucial for Boeing’s revenue as plane makers collect most payments upon jet handover. However, ongoing trade issues and recent prohibitions by China’s Commerce Ministry on certain U.S. firms, including Boeing Defense, Space & Security, highlight the broader challenges Boeing faces in the Chinese market.