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UPDATE 1-Brazil's Gol to buy 28 Boeing 737 MAX in fleet renewal

(Adds comments from executives)

SAO PAULO, Aug 3 (Reuters) - Brazil’s Gol Linhas Aéreas Inteligentes has signed an agreement to buy 28 Boeing 737 MAX-8 aircraft that will replace 23 of its 737-800 NGs through the end of 2022, the airline said in a securities filing on Tuesday.

Gol said the new planes will reduce unit costs by 8% next year and are expected to generate about $200 million in cash equity gains.

“We’ve concluded our multi-year planning and, combined with the return of the company’s sustainable growth rate via the take-in of the minority interest in our loyalty program, we will now have more cash flow available for investment in aircraft acquisitions,” said Gol chief financial officer Richard Lark.

Gol is Boeing’s main South American customer and one of the largest customers for the 737 aircraft in the world, the airline said.

“Gol has done a remarkable job of managing the impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic and is well-positioned to return to its growth trajectory,” said Ricardo Cavero, Boeing vice president of sales for Latin America and the Caribbean.

Reporting by Anthony Boadle Editing by Chris Reese and Karishma Singh

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