Speaking at an event broadcast on cable television network CNBC, McNerney said he believes the company is nearing the end of development for the light-weight, carbon-composite airplane that is nearly three years behind its original schedule.
Development on the plane has been disrupted repeatedly by snags in the global supply chain, and Boeing has said it intends to bring more of the engineering and labor back in-house for future models.
McNerney also predicted a flattening out of defense budgets. Boeing derives about half of its revenue from its defense business.
(Reporting by Kyle Peterson, editing by Gerald E. McCormick)