UAE aviation authority committed to Boeing 737 MAX return

FILE PHOTO: A Boeing 737 MAX airplane lands after a test flight at Boeing Field in Seattle, Washington, U.S. June 29, 2020. REUTERS/Karen Ducey

DUBAI (Reuters) - The United Arab Emirates civil aviation authority on Thursday said it was monitoring the certification process of the Boeing BA.N 737 MAX and was committed to seeing its safe return to service.

The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and Boeing in July completed certification test flights on the 737 MAX, a key milestone toward the plane’s return to service.

The best-selling plane has been grounded globally since March 2019 after two fatal crashes in five months killed 346 people. Emirati carrier flydubai is a major buyer of the jet.

The General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) is working closely with the FAA, Boeing and local operators on resolving issues related to the MAX, GCAA Director General Saif Mohammd al-Suwaidi said in a statement.

The GCAA was committed to ensure the jet’s safe return to service in the UAE and was also working with the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) about the return, he said.

The narrow-body aircraft is expected to return to service in the fourth quarter, Suwaidi said.

Reporting by Alexander Cornwell; Writing by Davide Barbuscia and Alexander Cornwell; Editing by Jan Harvey and Christopher Cushing