Oman’s national carrier, which was elevated to the role when Muscat relinquished its stake in Gulf Air last year, has expanded rapidly over the past 12 months.

The airline carried 965,459 passengers in the first six months of 2008, up from 643,724 in the equivalent period in 2007. It is the biggest rise in traffic since the company began operations in 1993.

The airline operated 9,636 flights in the first half of 2008, up 43 per cent year on year.

It carried 176,850 passengers in June alone, breaking its previous record, which was set in April this year, and marking a 56 per cent increase on June 2007.