Star Alliance carrier Ethiopian Airlines has finalized a joint venture (JV) with the Chad government, paving the way for the launch of Chad’s new national carrier on Oct. 1.

Ethiopia’s flag carrier has confirmed it will take a 49% stake in the JV, while the government will own the remaining 51%. The project has previously been referred to as Chad Airlines.

“The strategic equity partnership in the launching of the new Chad national carrier is part of our Vision 2025 multiple hub strategy in Africa. The new Chad national carrier will serve as a strong hub in Central Africa availing domestic, regional and eventually international air connectivity to the major destinations in the Middle East, Europe and Asia,” Ethiopian Airlines Group CEO Tewolde Gebremariam said.

Ethiopian already has two JV carriers that are flying, Togolese airline ASKY in West Africa and Lilongwe-based Malawian Airlines in southern Africa.

The Addis Ababa-based carrier has also acquired stakes in Zambia Airways and Guinea Airlines—which are both new national carrier projects—and has submitted an expression of interest for Nigeria Air, the new Nigerian national carrier.

Preparations are also underway for the launch of Ethiopian Mozambique Airlines.

Gebremariam previously told ATW that the model for the startups is similar. They will all start with two to three aircraft each, with a fleet made up of Bombardier Q400s and Boeing 737s sourced from Ethiopian’s core fleet.

Victoria Moores