By Valerie Insinna
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Boeing met its jetliner delivery goals and recorded a 70% boost to annual net orders in 2023, reflecting a record-shattering year of sales for planemakers.
The U.S. manufacturer released the year-end figures on Tuesday as it contends with the fallout from an accident involving an Alaska Airlines 737 MAX 9, which lost a fuselage panel in mid-air last week.
Boeing delivered 528 planes in 2023 and booked 1,314 net new orders after allowing for cancellations, up from 480 deliveries and 774 net new orders in 2022.
It delivered 396 narrowbody 737 jets last year, meeting its revised goal of at least 375 single-aisle planes but falling short of the initial target of 400 to 450 jets.
The target was downgraded in October after a manufacturing flaw by fuselage supplier Spirit AeroSystems forced the it to inspect planes, slowing deliveries.
Boeing delivered 73 787 Dreamliners in 2023, meeting its goal of 70 to 80 aircraft.
Boeing's orders and deliveries are likely to eclipsed by its European rival Airbus, which broke industry records for gross and net orders and beat its delivery target of 720 airplanes in 2023 with deliveries in the mid-730s, sources told Reuters last week.
Boeing won 1,456 gross orders for 2023, or 1,576 net orders after accounting adjustments.
In December, the company booked 371 gross orders, including highest-ever monthly sales of the 737 MAX at 301 planes. Spanish carrier Air Europa canceled a booking for two Dreamliners.
The company delivered 44 737 MAXs and one older-model 737NG last month. It also handed over seven 767s, four 777 freighters and 11 787s.
Its order backlog increased from 5,324 to 5,626.
Airbus is set to announce its orders and deliveries on Thursday.
Boeing executives are expected to lay out new goals for 2024 alongside the release of the company's fourth-quarter results on Jan. 31.
(Reporting by Valerie Insinna; Editing by Jamie Freed)