SEATTLE - Boeing [NYSE: BA] delivered a Next-Generation 737-800 to Iraqi Airways, the first of 30 that the airline ordered in 2008, marking a milestone in its relationship with the airline.

Hadi Al Ameri, Iraq's minister of transportation, said: "The Next-Generation 737-800 will play a key role in helping us modernize our fleet and integrate into the regional and international commercial aviation system.

"Boeing has played a pivotal role in our growth plan and the Next-Generation 737 has earned an excellent reputation for reliability and operational efficiency."

With this delivery, Iraqi Airways currently has 39 Boeing airplanes on order, including 29 Next-Generation 737-800s and 10 787 Dreamliners.

Marty Bentrott, vice president for sales, Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Middle East, Russia and Central Asia, added: "This is a historic milestone in our relationship with Iraqi Airways and a testament to the value that the Next-Generation 737-800 will bring to the airline's fleet.

"Boeing is proud of the confidence that Iraqi Airways has in its products and we look forward to further strengthening this relationship to fulfill the airline's future commercial aviation needs." 

The Next-Generation 737 family has orders for more than 6,500 airplanes, while the 737 family in total exceed 11,000 orders to date.

Boeing has delivered more than 7,600 737 aircraft, including more than 4,500 Next-Generation 737 aircraft and currently has more than 3,400 unfilled orders for 737 aircraft (through July 2013).