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Long-awaited return to skies for the jetliner is a significant step for Boeing, which counts China as a major market

SINGAPORE—China returned Boeing Inc.’s BA 0.57%increase; green up pointing triangle 737 MAX to its skies Friday after almost four years, a significant milestone for the U.S. company, which relies on China as a major market.

Two of the jets, operated by China Southern Airlines ZNH 3.27%increase; green up pointing triangle, took off from the southern city of Guangzhou in what industry experts say are the first commercial flights since March 2019 by a Chinese airline using the aircraft.

The first left at 12:46 p.m. local time, landed two hours later at Zhengzhou and was scheduled to return later Friday, according to China Southern’s website. The other left later for Wuhan, also the first leg of a round-trip, the website showed.

The resumption of 737 MAX flights is a major step for Boeing. Before the pandemic, China was one of the biggest and most important buyers of airplanes in the world. Amid U.S.-China trade tensions, Boeing has sought to resume deliveries of new aircraft to China, including 737 MAX jets.

Excerpt from WSJ
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