Etihad Regional ATR 72-500 HB-ACC seen taxing to stand at Köln Bonn (EDDK, CGN). Picture: Thomas Saunders.

LONDON — Middle Eastern carrier, Etihad, has confirmed today that it has signed a new codeshare agreement with national carrier Swiss Air. The codeshare agreement will take place effective immediately with bookings already open.

The agreement will see Etihad Airways’ flight number EY, placed on Swiss Air flights between Geneva and Zurich, while Etihad’s flights between Zurich and Abu Dhabi will host the Swiss flight number LX.

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Peter Baumgartner, Etihad Airways CEO said:  “This codeshare deepens Etihad Airways’ commitment to the Swiss travel market and Switzerland, a key destination for travelers from our UAE home, neighboring Gulf countries, and across our Asia Pacific network. For travelers from Switzerland, our new relationship with SWISS will provide access to Etihad’s award-winning service and the hospitality for which our Abu Dhabi home is known.”

This agreement continues to show Etihad’s commitment to the codeshare agreement it has with the Lufthansa Group of which Swiss Air and Etihad Aviation Group is a part of. The daily service from Abu Dhabi to Zurich is operated by Etihad’s technologically advanced Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner and will keep its 2 class layout which seats 299 passengers, consisting of 28 Business Studios and 271 Economy seats.

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This is the second time Etihad has made a codeshare investment in the Swiss market after last year when it had decided to sell its 33.3 percent stake in Swiss carrier Darwin Airline; the change comes after the airline former CEO, James Hogan, left the company which was attributed to a “controlled restructuring”.

Etihad is not the only Middle Eastern carrier to invest in codeshare agreements with European airlines with both Emirates and Qatar dipping into the European pool also. Earlier this week, Qatar Airways and Iberia extended their code-sharing agreements between Madrid and Doha. Emirates currently have agreements with Flybe, TAP Portugal and Air Malta, which shows how extensively into Europe they want to go even if the routes they themselves operate already.

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Earlier this week, Qatar Airways and Iberia extended their code-sharing agreements between Madrid and Doha.

Currently, Emirates has agreements with Flybe, TAP Portugal and Air Malta, which shows how extensively into Europe they want to go even if the routes they themselves operate already.

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For Etihad, this is an important agreement, especially as the carrier has been struggling in recent months, trying to regain profitability following the demises of Alitalia and Air Berlin, two carriers that they were massively involved in.

For Swiss, under the Lufthansa Group, to sign this agreement shows that the group overall still has confidence in Etihad to provide the routes to Abu Dhabi and beyond from Europe.