Emirates and low-cost sister regional carrier flydubai have forged a partnership to integrate networks and co-ordinate on scheduling.

The new model will give flydubai passengers seamless connectivity to Emirates’ worldwide network and vice-versa.

The two airlines will further develop their hub at Dubai international airport, aligning their systems and operations.

Both airlines will continue to be managed independently, but will liaise with each other’s network to scale up operations and accelerate growth.

“The innovative partnership goes beyond code-sharing and includes integrated network collaboration with co-ordinated scheduling,” a statement said.

The partnership will be expanded over the coming months, with the first enhanced code-sharing arrangements starting in the last quarter of 2017.

The combined network of Emirates and flydubai is expected to reach 240 destinations, served by a combined fleet of 380 aircraft by 2022.

The current combined network comprises 216 unique destinations.

Emirates and flydubai are owned by the Investment Corporation of Dubai operating independently under separate teams of management.

Emirates Group chairman and chief executive and flydubai chairman Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum said: “This is an exciting and significant development for Emirates, flydubai and Dubai aviation.

“Both airlines have grown independently and successfully over the years, and this new partnership will unlock the immense value that the complementary models of both companies can bring to consumers, each airline, and to Dubai.”