Dubai charter company Eastern Skyjets has taken delivery of the Middle East's first BAe Jetstream 41. The 29-seat twin-turboprop will be offered as a corporate shuttle to transport personnel to hostile regions, including Iraq and other parts of the Middle East, for ad hoc charters and as a feeder for the region's airlines.

The acquisition comes as Eastern Skyjets embarks on an ambitious expansion strategy that includes a plan to quadruple the J41 fleet by the end of the year, including adding a 14-seat VIP-configured version.

"We are also planning to form an air taxi operation using very light jets to service key cities within the region," says Eastern Skyjets sales and marketing director Tahir Khan.

Eastern Skyjets is in the early stages of establishing its air-taxi operation and talks are already under way with a couple of airframers, he says. "We plan to have the basic infrastructure in place within four years. This will include six aircraft to service the key routes, with a view to adding more as demand dictates."

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Source: Flight International