The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said Wednesday that it had approved the design of the Boeing 737-8200, a variant of the 737 MAX 8 with increased passenger capacity, a necessary step before the U.S. aircraft manufacturer can begin delivering the planes to Ryanair.
The FAA said the 737-8200 incorporates all of the design improvements that were part of the 20-month review that was conducted on the 737 MAX following two fatal crashes.
Boeing said Wednesday it would “continue to work with global regulators to safely return the 737-8 and -9 to service, Reuters reported.
In December, Ryanair – Europe’s largest airline – said it was is placing a firm order for 75 additional 737 MAX 8200 planes.
Ryanair Group Chief Executive Michael O’Leary said last week the airline expected to receive eight of the MAX aircraft in April, another eight in May and none in June.
The European Union Aviation Safety Agency still must approve the aircraft, a move that could come soon after the FAA approval.