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17 July 2017, 04:44 | Erica Roy
The two airlines will also develop their hub at Dubai International airport to align their systems and operations
It adds that the two sides are discussing various additional network and customer initiatives including frequent-flyer alignment.
However, both airlines will continue to be managed independently with no plans for a full merger, they said.
Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive of Emirates Group and Chairman, flydubai said, "This is an exciting and significant development for Emirates, flydubai, and Dubai aviation". Emirates' annual profit fell in the year ended March 31 for the first time in five years and flydubai's profit fell for a second consecutive year in 2016.
Emirates cited fierce competition and a "relentless rise" in the U.S. dollar as the main factor in falling revenues.
The low-priced carrier's CEO Ghaith Al Ghaith said at the time he expected 2017 to be another "challenging year" and said the airline would remain "prudent".
The tie-up will include co-ordinated scheduling and integrated collaboration to ensure a beneficial combination of the networks of each carrier, with increased feed and the possibility of opening new routes.
"The new model will give flydubai customers seamless connectivity to Emirates' worldwide destinations spanning six continents".
The new arrangement will allow FlyDubai passengers access to Emirates' extensive network and enable Emirates customers access to FlyDubai's regional network.
The two airlines will also further develop their hub at Dubai International, aligning their systems and operations to ensure a seamless travel experience through the ultra-modern airport; now the world's busiest for international passengers.
"Over the past years FlyDubai has gradually encroached on Emirates' market, both in terms of serving overlapping routes and upgrading its product by moving away from the strict low cost model", Pistik said.
"The partnership is working to optimise the networks and schedules of both airlines, to open up new city-pair connections offering consumers greater choice", the airlines said in a joint statement. The current combined network travels to 216 destinations.
Emirates, the Middle East's largest airline, and budget carrier flydubai are expanding their commercial relationship to create a combined fleet of 380 jets flying to as many as 240 destinations by 2022.
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