China's Boeing 737 Max competitor about to hit the market: Gordon Chang

China ordered its carriers to ground all Boeing 737 Max 8 jets following Sunday’s deadly crash. While it was a safety issue, there are also political considerations, according to "Coming Collapse of China" author Gordon Chang.

“You’ve also got to remember that China has a brand-new competitor for the 737 Max series and that’s the Comac C919 … which is about to be sold,” he told FOX Business’ Maria Bartiromo on Monday. “So I think clearly that’s in the back of the Chinese minds, which is a reason why they were among the first to actually ground the plane.”

An Ethiopian Airlines flight, from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, bound from Nairobi, Kenya, crashed six minutes after taking off Sunday morning, killing all 157 on board.

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It was not immediately clear what caused the crash of the latest generation of the Boeing 737 but it was the same model flown by Lion Air, which crashed off the coast of Indonesia last October, killing all 189 on board.

Ethiopian Airlines said it has grounded its 737 Max 8 fleet until further notice.

Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg addressed safety concerns on the new fleet following the fatal Lion Air crash.


“The bottom line here is the 737 Max is safe and safety is a core value for us,” he said exclusively to Bartiromo in November. “We ensure that airplanes are safe.”