The arrangement comes into force from 14 January 2008 giving passengers the choice of Etihad’s nine and MEA’s five weekly flights between Abu Dhabi and the Lebanese capital. Passengers will then be able to change to onward connections with either airline.

The deal gives Etihad customers access to a number of new destinations beyond Beirut that are not currently served by the UAE airline, including Athens, Larnaca and Istanbul, and continues the airline’s recent strategy to enhance its international network. The company has recently signed similar codeshare deals with Royal Air Maroc and Virgin Blue in Australia.