Boeing conducted its first test flight to recertify its Boeing 737 MAX in one of the most developing aviation markets, China, on August 11, 2021.

As per Flightradar24.com, the flight (registered as N7201S) departed at 09:24 Beijing time from Shanghai Pudong International Airport (PVG) to conduct a flight to nowhere and started heading towards the southeast direction to perform some maneuvers until finally setting course back to PVG for its arrival at 13:41 local time.

The plane had initially departed from Boeing Field, officially King County International Airport (BFI), on August 4, 2021. It arrived at PVG on August 7, 2021, after having some layovers in Kapolei and Guam.

China was the first country to ground Boeing 737 MAX in 2019 after two deadly crashes in Ethiopia and Indonesia claimed 346 lives.

Although being approved by the Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) and European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), which are significant civil aviation regulatory authorities, Boeing is eager to get the 737 MAX recertified by the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) as well given the potential market growth the American aircraft manufacturer forecasts in east Asia.

“Boeing continues to work with global regulators as they complete their validation processes in order to better understand enhancements to the airplane,” said Boeing in a statement to FlightGlobal regarding the recent test flight conducted. 

The delay in recertificating the aircraft could be politically motivated due to tensions between Beijing and Washington in 2019 amidst a trade war between the two nations.

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A Boeing 737 MAX reportedly departed to conduct a key test flight in China, a step towards gaining approval in one of the most significant markets.