Syrian Arab Airlines announced that it believes that its regional carrier joint-venture with Middle East Airlines will begin services in the second quarter of next year.The regional airline, named Phoenician Express, will initially operate a pair of 50- to 70-seat aircraft on a network based out of Damascus and Beirut.

The two carriers will jointly own 50% of Phoenician Express, and the other half will be owned by private investors. The airline will serve domestic destinations in Syria, and international routes from both Syria and Lebanon, operating to countries including Jordan, Cyprus, Turkey and Egypt.