Arab News, Tuesday, Jan 17, 2023 | Jamadi Al Thani 24, 1444
Saudi Arabia’s flynas eyes expansion with new units in two more countries: Report
Saudi Arabian low-coast air carrier flynas is eyeing to expand its global
presence by opening new units in two countries, according to a report.
The airline’s move comes in line with its goal to
become the Middle East’s largest discount airline and one of the five biggest
globally, Bloomberg reported citing a company statement.
The report further noted that flynas would seek
Air Operator Certificates in two unidentified countries, in an attempt to double
its scale of operations.
Saudi Arabia is pumping billions of dollars into
the aviation sector, as tourism is set to be one of the main pillars of
its economy in the future. This comes as the Kingdom is steadily
diversifying its revenue in line with the goals outlined under Vision 2030.
The Riyadh-based airline is looking to play part
in the Kingdom’s aviation push, with a plan to expand its existing fleet to
250 while also adding widebody models such as the Boeing 787 and Airbus SE A350
to its existing array of narrowbody carriers.
Earlier in January, flynas revealed that it
doubled its annual growth in operation and performance during 2022, as
passengers increased by 91 percent to 8.7 million, flights by 45 percent to
66,000 and seat capacity by 46 percent.
“The annual results confirm the progress in the
company’s strategic plan with receiving of 8 new Airbus A320neo and joining 2
Airbus A330 aircraft, which will contribute to serving the pilgrims and Umrah
performers as well as expanding to new markets,” Bander Almohanna, CEO and
managing director of flynas, said in a press statement.
Some of the key initiatives of the Kingdom’s
National Aviation Strategy include opening a new airport in Riyadh and launching
a new airline to cater to the increased demand.
Both the airport and the airline will be owned by
Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund which holds $607 billion worth of assets
under management, according to data from the Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute.
Saudi Arabia’s National Aviation Strategy aims
to increase air connectivity to 250 destinations, reaching 330 million
passengers, and double air cargo capacity to 4.5 million tons by 2030.