A new civil aviation law containing 176 articles was approved today by the Saudi Shoura Council, paving the way for privately-owned airlines to be licensed within 6 months. Negotiations with airline start-ups that have already applied for licenses will begin 'within weeks' according to a government official.
Investors that have applied for licenses include NAS, a charter/executive operation and Al Tayyar Group, which operates the largest travel agency in the Kingdom. There has been much talk about this issue in the past year but things seem to be moving finally.
The passed law will surely contain guidelines governing religious factors in the airline business, including whether women will be allowed to apply for Flight Crew positions, dress code for cabin crew, etc.
Does anyone on this forum work for NAS and aware of any progress? I know Al Tayyar had claimed recently to have completed all the planning required to start-up its airline.