Indian airline SpiceJet and Gulf Air, the national carrier of Bahrain, have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to explore greater co-operation between the two airlines.
They are going to examine areas of potential synergy, including looking at co-ordinating cargo services, interline or codeshare agreements, shared engineering services and pilot training.
The MoU was signed by Ajay Singh, chairman and managing director of SpiceJet, and Krešimir Kučko, Gulf Air’s chief executive.
Singh commented: “These are exciting times for SpiceJet as we pursue our international expansion plan.
“We are developing an extensive portfolio of destinations both at home and in international markets. The Middle East has always been among our top priority markets.
“This agreement is going to play a very important role for SpiceJet’s next phase of growth as we continue to explore the innumerable opportunities around us.”
Kučko added: “This is a historic event for both Gulf Air and SpiceJet as we strengthen commercial ties between the two carriers.”
Gulf Air currently operates 82 flights a week to eight destinations in India: Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Thiruvananthapuram, Cochin, Hyderabad, Calicut and Bangalore.
SpiceJet currently flies to more than 50 destinations in India.
SpiceJet’s cargo division, SpiceXpress, took delivery of its first 737-800 Boeing converted freighter (BCF) earlier this autumn.
The standard-body freighter, the first 737-800BCF to be operated in south Asia, was leased from NGF Alpha Limited, a division of Spectre Cargo Solutions.
The airline also operates two B737-700Fs.