The Pakistani government has authorised the granting of a domestic Regular Public Transport (RPT) operating licence to Q Airways (Karachi International), Minister of Information Fawad Chaudhry told local media after a cabinet meeting.

"The airline will initially operate flights between Karachi International, Lahore International, and Islamabad International," he revealed.

The start-up plans to initially operate three A320-200s within the next three-four months, namely in April or May 2022. Chaudhry said that in the long-term, Q-Airlines is also planning to enter the international market. Its chief executive is Muhammad Anwar Qureshi, the owner of Ramada Hotels Group operations in Pakistan, while its other four directors are also Qureshi family members.

Once launched, Q-Airlines would join PIA - Pakistan International Airlines, AirBlue, Serene Air, and AirSial in serving the Pakistani domestic market. Another start-up, K2 Airways, had its operator's licence extended in October 2021. The authorities have given the start-up until May 2023 to secure its Air Operator's Certificate (AOC).

Air Arabia-backed Fly Jinnah and Jet Green Airlines are also in the process of certification for their respective RPTs. Both began their respective gauntlets at the same time as Q-Airlines.