Among the 150 orders for 737 Max canceled in March, a large part refers to the Brazilian airline Gol. The company, which operates a standardized fleet of Boeing aircraft, has decided to reduce its Max series order by 34 units.
Hours after the release of the Boeing report, Gol issued a statement to explain the details of the renegotiation. According to the company, the agreement not only included the review of the order as cash compensation, although the value has not been revealed.
According to the airline’s CEO, Paulo Kakinoff, “Gol remains fully committed to the 737 MAX as the core of its fleet and this agreement further strengthens our long and successful partnership with Boeing.”
The airline justified the move because of the grounding of the 737 Max a year ago. The problem, caused by project failures, frustrated the delivery of 25 units scheduled for 2019. “This negatively impacted Gol’s operations, its growth and its fleet renewal plan,” explains the statement.
As a result, the remaining order for the 737 Max has been reduced to 95 aircraft that will be received at a flexible pace, Gol said.
No coronavirus impact yet
Gol’s statement does not mention the coronavirus crisis, which has caused passenger air transport to suffer an unprecedented impact. Therefore, it will not be surprising if new cuts or postponements are announced by the company, given the expectation of a slow recovery in demand.
The Boeing 737 Max began delivery to Gol in July 2018 and proved to be an extremely efficient aircraft for the airline. Thanks to the new aircraft, the company resumed its routes between Brazil and the US, which were previously carried out on a technical scale in the Caribbean due to the smaller autonomy of the 737NG.
The optimism with the narrowbody was such that Gol announced that it would accelerate the delivery of the 737 Max and withdraw the 737-800 from its fleet. The most recent forecasts say the jet is expected to return to service in mid-2020.