The aircraft going to Nairobi took off at 08.38am local time from Addis Ababa and lost contact at 08.44am.
Just months ago, a crash involving the same kind of plane left 189 people dead in Jakarta, Indonesia.
Following the recent crash, China’s aviation watchdog ordered the temporary grounding of all its Max 8 planes today while a Caribbean operator suspended operations with both of its new planes.
In the US, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said it was “closely monitoring developments” following the tragedy.
The Civil Aviation Administration of China issued a notice at 9am local time ordering domestic airlines to suspend the commercial operation of the Boeing 737 Max 8 before 6pm.
Meanwhile, Cayman Airways president Fabian Whorms said both of the airline’s new Max 8s will not fly from today, Metro UK reports.
Boeing chief executive Dennis Muilenburg said on Sunday that the American firm is providing “technical assistance” to the Ethiopian government and regulatory authorities in their investigation.
Ethiopian Airlines also grounded its remaining Max 8 aircraft, although the cause of the crash was yet to be determined. Its chief executive, Tewolde Gebremariam, said the operator was “one of the safest” in the world.
Ethiopian Airlines said it had contacted the families of all victims, who came from 35 nations.