United Arab Emirates start-up RAK Airways is aiming to launch operations in January with a fleet of Boeing 737s and 757s, and has indicated that initial routes will serve destinations in Iran and India.

The airline is based in the emirate of Ras Al Khaimah and is bidding to become the fourth government-backed carrier in the UAE behind Dubai’s Emirates, Abu Dhabi’s Etihad Airways and Sharjah’s Air Arabia.

RAK Airways has settled on a livery for its aircraft and is recruiting Boeing 757 and 737-300 crews.

The carrier’s chief executive officer Jack Romero, who was instrumental in establishing British Mediterranean Airways, says RAK Airways intends to operate both scheduled and charter services. The airline also aims to include a business-class cabin on its flights.

Its website indicates that three destinations in Iran – Shiraz, Isfahan and Bandar Abbas – feature in its initial network plans, along with the Indian cities of Delhi, Cochin and Trivandrum.

But Romero says the airline is planning to extend its reach to additional cities in both states, as well as to other countries in the vicinity of the Indian subcontinent. Within three years it also plans to branch into Russia and a number of former Soviet republics.

Source: Flight International