SEATTLE, DPA – The United States Federal Aviation Administration says Boeing will pay at least $US17 million ($A22 million) in penalties and must undertake multiple corrective actions to improve quality control in building its 737 aircraft.

Though that’s the largest fine imposed in some years, it’s a relatively small amount for Boeing. Federal law limits the maximum fine the FAA can impose to about $US30,000 ($A38,726) per defective plane delivered.

More damagingly, the FAA action adds yet another black mark to recent revelations about serious quality control shortcomings in Boeing’s production system.

It further harms the jet maker’s reputation, already blackened by the design errors that led to the two fatal 737 Max crashes.

Just last week, Congress demanded records to begin an investigation of ongoing quality lapses.

In a statement on Thursday, Boeing said “We take our responsibility to meet all regulatory requirements very seriously”.

“These penalties stem from issues that were raised in 2019 and which we fully resolved in our production system and supply chain,” Boeing said.

“We continue to devote time and resources to improving safety and quality performance.”

The FAA fine relates to two separate defects that Boeing allowed to be installed on its Renton-built 737s, including both the older 737 NG model and the newest 737 Max.