Two years after the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, Malaysia 'remains hopeful' the missing plane will be found.

Malaysian prime minister Najib Razak said on 8 March – the second anniversary of the aircraft's disappearance – that recent debris found on Reunion provided 'further evidence' that the plane had crashed in the southern Indian Ocean.

He said: "The disappearance of MH370 was without precedent, and the search has been the most challenging in aviation history. Amidst some of the world's most inhospitable terrain – at depths of up to six kilometres, across underwater mountain ranges, and in the world's fastest currents - the search team have been working tirelessly to find MH370's resting place. We are grateful for their efforts.

"The current search operation is expected to be completed later this year, and we remain hopeful that MH370 will be found in the 120,000 square kilometre area under investigation.
"If it is not, then Malaysia, Australia and China will hold a tripartite meeting to determine the way forward," New Straits Times reported.

MH370 disappeared en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with 239 people on board (227 passengers and 12 crew members), with no sign at all of the Boeing 777 until July 2015, when a piece of debris confirmed as coming from the plane was found on Reunion, with several other pieces of debris from the French island and from Mozambique currently being tested.

The search has reportedly cost $90m (£63m, €81m), funded by Australia and Malaysia, with three quarters of the search area already covered – leading the head of Australia's Transport Safety Bureau, Martin Dolan, to stipulate the plane was likely to be found in the remaining quarter of the search area.

Debris was found on Reunion island Prisca Bigot/ Reuters

Malaysia's lead investigator Kok Soo Choon said in a statement on state television reported by BBC News: "At this time, the team is continuing to work towards finalising its analysis, findings, conclusions and safety recommendations on eight relevant areas associated with the disappearance of flight MH370 based on relevant information."

The plane's disappearance led to a number of conspiracy theories put forwards as to its whereabouts, including that it was hijacked or that the pilot intended for the plane to crash.

More recently, at the beginning of March, a UFO hunter said he thought he had found the missing aircraft in the Cape of Good Hope, off the coast of South Africa, posting a picture of a plane-shaped outline he believed could be the missing aircraft.

The two-year anniversary is the last day that families can file for airline compensation, although many families are unwilling to do so as they do not want to state their relatives are deceased.