Boeing stopped buying Russian aluminum – the second time it ended sourcing a crucial metal from Russia since the Ukraine invasion

Boeing stopped buying Russian aluminum – the second time it ended sourcing a crucial metal from Russia since the Ukraine invasion
787 Dreamliner planes being manufactured at Boeing's Seattle factory.Taylor Rains/Insider
  • Boeing said it stopped buying Russian aluminum in March after suspending operations in Russia.
  • It's the second crucial metal Boeing has stopped buying from Russia, Reuters first reported.

Boeing said it stopped buying Russian-made aluminum following Vladimir Putin's invasion of Ukraine, marking the second time the aircraft manufacturer has ended sourcing a crucial material from the country.

"Boeing suspended purchasing aluminum from Russia in March, as we suspended major operations in Russia," the company told Insider. Reuters first reported the announcement, made late Tuesday.

The company said it sourced the metal from around the world, including the US, but did not provide further details.

Boeing responded to Putin's invasion of Ukraine in February by closing offices in Russia and restricting maintenance and the supply of spare parts to Russian-based Boeing planes.

The measures also included suspending a contract to buy titanium from the Russian metals giant VSMPO-AVISMA.


Boeing uses aluminum and titanium to produce components such as sheets, plates, forging, and extrusions for its planes.

Russia is a significant source of aluminum, with Rusal accounting for 5.9% of global production in 2019, according to the company.

The move comes as Boeing continues to battle ongoing production delays that have affected deliveries of models including the 787 Dreamliner and the 737 MAX, which was grounded following two crashes that killed almost 350 people in 2018 and 2019.

Deliveries of the 737 Max have been hampered by a shortage of both parts and labor. The Seattle Times reported in March that difficulties procuring foam insulation meant that planes were rolling off Boeing's Renton production line with unfinished cargo bays.

Airline bosses have criticized the delays. On Wednesday, Michael O'Leary, CEO of Ryanair, Europe's biggest airline by passenger numbers and a major Boeing customer, said he was meeting Boeing executives in Seattle to discuss the delays, per Reuters.


Ryanair has received 73 of the 210 737 Max planes it has ordered and expected a further 21 by April. "We doubt their capacity to deliver," O'Leary said.

He previously accused Boeing management of "running around like headless chickens".