Norwegian is terminating purchase agreements for all 97 of its remaining jets on order from Boeing.
The cancellation covers 92 Boeing 737 MAX planes and five 787 Dreamliners as well as GoldCare service agreements. The aircraft are worth at least US$10.6 billion based on list prices. News of Norwegian’s order cancellation comes as Boeing successfully completed its first test flight towards recertification of the MAX after receiving clearance from the FAA.
The entire Boeing 737 MAX fleet has been grounded since March 2019 following two crashes in Indonesia and Ethiopia which killed 346 people. At the time of the grounding, Norwegian had 18 MAX jets among its 163-strong fleet.
Claim filed for return of pre-delivery payments
A statement by the Oslo-based carrier said that negotiations with Boeing had “not led to an agreement with a reasonable compensation.” The airline has also filed a legal claim seeking the return of pre-delivery payments for the aircraft along with compensation for losses related to the Max’s long grounding.
Norwegian had been on the brink of financial collapse due to plummeting air travel demand caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The carrier was able to convert debt to equity and sell new shares last month, enabling it to access the Norwegian government’s loan guarantee scheme.
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